Panicky Bodos flee Hyderabad in droves - The New Indian Express

Panicky Bodos flee Hyderabad in droves

Published: 15th August 2012 08:09 AM

Last Updated: 15th August 2012 08:09 AM

The unprecedented ethnic violence in Assam and the subsequent riots in Mumbai have created a scare in the Bodos living in Hyderabad.

Over 1,000 persons hailing from the north-eastern state, mostly Bodo tribals and working as security guards here, have fled the city fearing attacks from a particular community. More are likely to leave in the next few days leaving the private security industry in the state perplexed.

On Saturday one security guard posted in an industry in Anjaiah Nagar in Rayadurgam was  assaulted by a group of persons. The targeted attack has triggered a massive reverse-migration to the north-east.

Police sources said certain inputs trickling in suggested that after the Assam violence and the subsequent riots in Mumbai, there were apprehensions that people from Assam, specially Bodos, could be targeted in Hyderabad and other parts of Andhra Pradesh.

Hyderabad, particularly the old city, has considerable numbers of Bangladeshi nationals who work at shops and other establishments. ''Closed-door discussions are being held on the situation in Assam and we are keeping a watch,'' the sources said.

Hyderabad police commissioner Anurag Sharma told Express that no attack on people from the north-east had been reported in the city so far. Asked whether any alert was issued by the Centre, he replied in the negative.

Last Saturday, the security guard, 21-year-old Milal Saiki, was assaulted at Anjaiah Nagar. Quoting Saiki, police said the attackers yelled at him ''What are you doing here and why have you not left for Assam?'' Rayadurgam police have registered cases under Sections 448, 323 and 506 of IPC and have identified one of the attackers.

''We are verifying whether the attack was aimed at people from the north-east. Our information is that after this incident, many Assamese residing in Anjaiah Nagar and Siddiqui Nagar have left the places,'' Cyberabad police commissioner Dwaraka Tirumala Rao said.

''Between 400 and 500 guards have already left for Assam in the last three days and   hundreds more from our agency alone may follow suit,'' said Vemuri Amarnath Chowdary, vice-president of AP Private Security Association and director of Agile Security Private Limited. His agency alone has nearly 900 security guards hailing from Assam.

Asked what made the security guards from Assam leave Hyderabad all of a sudden, Amarnath said that most of them feared that they would be killed. ''We are not sure how all this started but many of them started receiving phone calls from their families  in Assam and panicked, and they took the next train home,'' said Amarnath, adding that the private security industry was surprised at the sudden development.

Though no formal complaint was lodged with the police about the Siddiqui Nagar assault, sources said that the word spread that Assamese were being targeted.

''The sudden development has left us perplexed. We do not know why this is happening,'' said the owner of another private agency who did not wish to be quoted, saying the matter was ''too sensitive.'' He feared that security agencies would incur huge losses due to the reverse migration.

According to Amarnath Chowdary, there are about 800 private security agencies in the state, of which 500 are registered and about 100 of them have huge manpower from Assam.

''Many establishments, which had our men posted there, are now without security. With Independence Day tomorrow, we are even more concerned. As an immediate step, we are recruiting people from various parts of the state and also Odisha,'' he said.

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