'He is still leading mobs, we are scared'

 The chilling episode of hooligans hounding them is still fresh in the minds of Ugandan women from Khirki Extension in south Delhi, where Law Minister Somnath Bharti “incited” residents to harass them. 

“He (Bharti) is still leading mobs. We feel threatened. I want him to resign,” said the woman, recalling how the mob called them prostitutes and drug addicts.

“We are still not sure of our safety,” said an Ugandan woman, recalling her horrifying experience on January 17 during which the controversial minister and his supporters tried to enter their homes and held them hostage.

The pained Ugandan woman said, “Our skin may be dark but our blood is red like your. Why are you discriminating against us at the behest of a minister?”

“Police are helping us, our landlord says don’t go but when Somnath, a minister, is encouraging people to harass us how can we feel safe?” she said. “We saw Arvind Kejriwal saying that Somnath did not do anything wrong but could not ourselves come forward to reveal the truth.”

“It hurt us when the minister tells his people that blacks are bad,” she said, adding that they never ill-treat Indians in Uganda. Just because rapes take place in India, we do not call all Indians in Uganda as “rapists”.

The woman said if one person from a community was indulging in wrongdoings, there was no need to malign the entire group. “If my neighbour is supposedly a prostitute, I need not be blamed,” she said.

“They (mob) said we travel in expensive cars, we venture out till late and there were condoms in the car. I ask you, is it a crime if my Indian friend has expensive car. Is carrying condom a crime in India or are there restrictions on movement in a democratic country like India?” she said. 

The woman’s compatriot tried hard to hold back her tears, and said, “I came to India on December 30 for medical treatment and have been bedridden. Now, I can’t venture out to get mobile phone recharge or medicines.”

She said that earlier when kids in Khirki Extension pelted stones at them, spitted on them and made racial comments, they used to forgive them thinking they had immature minds.

“After Somnath’s raid we know it is the ministers who feed the hatred into the minds of people who pass it on to their innocent children,” she said.

But the woman showed resolve to fight for every person from African nations. “Our families in Uganda want us to come back but I am not leaving till this case is solved.”
Even as the Ugandan women put forward their horrific experiences in Khirki Extension, Education Minister Manish Sisodia said it was unfortunate that a section of people from African countries living in rented homes in the colony were leaving the area.

“I appeal to the (African) people not to leave Khirki Extension,” Sisodia told reporters.

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