Against Racism: Northeast Student Orgs in Solidarity with Africans

Students from the Northeast say the attacks on Africans are rooted in racism and they fall victim to it as well.

In light of the recent racist attacks against African nationals in India, especially those in Greater Noida, several students’ organisations representing students who belong to Northeast India have come together and issued a letter of solidarity against the attacks. They emphasise that these attacks are rooted in racism and discrimination and that students from the Northeast fall victim to them as well, thus, they stand in solidarity with African students.

Read the full letter here:

Solidarity in Response to Discrimination and Assault against African Nationalities

The undersigned students’ organisations and unions from Northeast India would like to extend solidarity with people of African origin living in India and particularly those who were attacked in Greater Noida recently. We empathise with the violence, ordeals, and humiliation faced by Africans in India. We are distressed to learn of the ongoing situation, and the denial of the Indian government to term the incident as racist is worrying. Various incidents of racism against people of African origin in India from the past are not isolated incidents, they stemmed from the deep rooted prejudiced mindset of majority of Indians. We condemn racial discrimination against anyone (particularly people of African origin) and caricatures people make by creating stereotypes like cannibalism and drug use/peddling. These stereotypes are reflections of racist mindset which we, people from Northeast India are also at receiving end over and over again.

In this regard, we would like to highlight what we make of our struggle against racism. Whenever we Northeastern people are racially discriminated, we see that nationalism fervour is being infused by stating that we don't deserve to be discriminated when we are also Indian. Statement like this is misleading as racism is committed towards any people from other race irrespective of one's citizenry of a nation. Racism cases from the past, and the way they were dealt with are far from convincing. For instance, the Nido Tania case, and incident of Rajiv Chowk Metro Station, Delhi where Africans were brutally assaulted.

We urge the Government of India to take appropriate steps and measures to address this issue. We believe that the first step towards addressing this issue, is to acknowledge the existence of racism. We also like to convey that the government and concerned authorities, and civil societies should continue to reach out to people of African origin and make their voices heard and involve them in any decision concerning their interests.

Lastly we would like to convey that we are in this together for common fight against racism. You are not alone in this fight, our support is with you and we will continue to resist the forces of racism.

In Solidarity-

  1. All Bodo Students’ Union
  2. Arunachal Students’ Union, Delhi (ASUD)
  3. Concerned Faculties, St. Edmund’s College, Shillong
  4. Delhi Association of Manipur Muslim Students (DAMMS)
  5. Delhi Mizo Zirlai Pawl (Delhi Mizo Students' Association)
  6. Foothills’ Study Circle, University of Hyderabad
  7. Hyderabad Manipur Society (HYMS)
  8. Kuki Students' Organisation, Delhi & NCR
  9. Kuki Students' Organisation, Mumbai
  10. Manipur Students' Association Delhi (MSAD)
  11. Meghalaya Students in Delhi
  12. North East Students’ Association, Jamia (NESA)
  13. Naga Students’ Union, Mumbai (NSUM)
  14. Naga Students' Union Pune (NSUP)
  15. North East Students, Delhi School of Social Work, University of Delhi
  16. North East Support Centre & Helpline
  17. North East Students, Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), Mumbai
  18. North East Students' Forum (NESF), Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), Delhi
  19. Northeast Solidarity, Bangalore
  20. North-Eastern Hill University Students' Union
  21. Raiot Webzine
  22. Tripura Students’ Forum, Delhi. (TSFD)
  23. Thma U Rangli-Juki (TUR), Meghalaya