The Karnataka government of India has suspended another senior police official in connection with the alleged assault and stripping of a Tanzanian woman student here, even as African students staged a rally over the incident on Saturday.
Assistant commissioner of police AN Pise of Yeshwanthpur division has been suspended for dereliction of duty, Police commissioner NS Megharikh said, a day after a team of Tanzanian high commissioner John WH Kijazi, also the dean of the African Diplomatic Corps, and external affairs ministry officials flew in here and met state officials and African students.
With this, six policemen — an ACP, an inspector and four constables — have been suspended, Megharikh said.
On a mission to get a first-hand account and build confidence among African students here, the Tanzanian envoy had backed the steps taken by the government in connection with the incident on Sunday.
"We are very much impressed with the action already taken," Kijazi had said, dismissing the talk about racism.
Nine people have been arrested in connection with the incident in which the 21-year old Tanzanian student faced mob fury in vigilante justice after a Sudanese driving a car in an alleged drunken state struck a couple, killing a woman on the spot.
Police have maintained it was a case of "mistaken identity" and racism was not involved.
Meanwhile, the African students in Bengaluru are planning to conduct a blood donation drive in a show of solidarity to their Indian counterparts and citizens.
"The Same Blood Campaign" is an initiative of FISAB (Federation of International Students Association Bangalore) and "Just Practicals" (which is a skill development startup offering practical, job-relevant training in technical and management courses to African and international students in Bangalore).
FISAB is a confluence of international students from 42 countries, who are currently pursuing academic and research disciplines in and around Bengaluru.
The event, planned in March is aimed at sensitising the local populace to African students and to drive a sense of harmony and togetherness, Just Practicals said in a statement.
A rally attended by over two hundred African students at Town Hall in the nucleus of the city here saw expressions of grief mixed with a call for togetherness and inclusion.
Prince Nkita, a student from the Republic of Congo studying here said: "People need to understand the differences and the similarities as it is the same blood and the same race that is donating this blood."