NEW DELHI: On a day when Nigerian Government summoned Indian High Commissioner to protest against the attacks on its students in Greater Noida, the Indian government refused to qualify the attacks as racially motivated and termed them criminal acts.
Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj also assured Parliament of action in the attack on four Nigerian students in a Mall in Greater Noida, Uttar Pradesh.
“It is clear that such criminal acts are completely unacceptable and have been condemned. We are engaged with the concerned authorities as well as the students,” Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) Spokesperson Gopal Baglay said in the weekly press briefing. He added: “Such acts represent the action of uninformed and misguide few. They do not detract from the deep belief of the Government and the people of India of Vasudeva Kutumbkam.”
The MEA, he said, is in constant touch with the District Administration of Gautam Buddha Nagar. District Administration has enhanced the security in the area immediately.
Earlier in the day, Indian High Commissioner to Nigeria Ambassador Nagabushana Reddy was called in by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Nigeria Ambassador Olushola Enikanolaiye. The Nigerian media quoted Enikanolaiye as saying that the prosecution of culprits was necessary to serve as a deterrent to others and to forestall future occurrences.
Expressing concern on the incident, the Enikanolaiye said: “We think this should not have happened considering the excellent relationship between two of us — the two countries have things in common and have been great friends." The Nigerian government while hoping that the incident would not take its toll on bilateral ties with India but reminded the Indian Ambassador that the attack was not first of its kind.
“And we want to see diligent prosecution so that it would serve as a deterrent to those who think they can take laws into their hands and harass students who are going about their studies," Enikanolaiye is reported to have told the Indian Ambassador.
In India, the District Magistrate of Gautam Buddha Nagar held a meeting of the residents, Foreign students’ associations in presence of the representatives from Nigerian High Commission in New Delhi. Swaraj has also spoken to Uttar Pradesh CM for action into the incident and Minister of State for External Affairs MJ Akbar spoke to the Acting High Commissioner of Nigeria.