Rumour on WhatsApp warns of further attacks on African students

Rumour on WhatsApp warns of further attacks on African students

Submitted by Editor on Fri, 2016-02-05 18:45 Bengaluru: A WhatsApp message warning about further attacks on African students is creating a fear psychosis among the student community in the city.The message – ominously similar in tone to the rumour which began circulating among the migrant North-Eastern community staying in the city in 2012, resulting in their exodus – is already forcing many to skip classes.A Tanzanian national studying pharmacy in Acharya College in Soladevanahalli said the contents of the message had got her worried.  The message read: “Dear Leader, Mr.Bosco just got a call from someone. He said that the locals are planning to attack again soon and the management of the college said to be at home till Friday or Saturday. So Mr. Bosco is residing on those areas to evacuate tomorrow early morning. Good Night.”Another Tanzanian national from the same college said that all African students in the locality had received the warning message on Wednesday night. “We are not feeling safe in India after the attack on my friend. Our students association warned us to be careful about future attacks on us. How can we feel safe here? ” asked the civil engineering student.The student said the college management was not coming to their aid. “Many African students are not attending the college since Monday in Acharya College. We requested the management to postpone the ongoing internal exams which begin from Monday. But they did not do that. All Indian students are attending the internal exam but we are not,” said the student.But an official from the Acharya College clarified that the college would conduct a separate internal exam for foreign students. Ayanda from South Africa, who is studying first year BBA at Acharya College, said the attack was a cause for concern for him and his friends. “We have been abused by the auto drivers many times. They also overcharge us. This is a common problem,” said Ayanda. The silver lining in their ordeal was that their Indian classmates did not discriminate against them. Zambian national Mwamba, who is studying BBA in the city, wondered how locals could take law into their hands. “We respect the locals and Indian law. Sudanese student Mohammed Ahmed Ismail did kill a woman in an accident. He may be punished by the law of the land. But how can the locals take law and order into their hands? And why did they attack Tanzanian girl?” asked Mwamba.To instill confidence among its rattled African student community, Acharya College has formed a team headed by a retired police officer to patrol in the area. “There are more than 200 African students studying in our college and many of them are feeling insecure. So we decided to visit their accommodations to instill confidence in them,” said Ramakrishna Gowda, an administrator of Acharya College.