Expats in Dubai from Delhi call for peace in hometown

Expats, Dubai, Delhi, call, peace, hometown
Smoke rises after clashes between two groups in New Delhi.-AP

Dubai - Expats said that they are worried as the whole debate has now taken on communal overtones.

By Saman Haziq

Published: Wed 26 Feb 2020, 5:00 PM

Last updated: Thu 27 Feb 2020, 3:50 PM

Indian expats who have family and friends in New Delhi said they were worried and shocked to see violence unfold in the Indian capital that has been witnessing horrific communal riots for three days. Suburbs in northeastern Delhi turned into battle grounds as violent clashes erupted on the streets of New Delhi on Sunday as protestors for and against India's controversial new citizenship law set vehicles alight, rioted and pelted stones.
With news coming that the violent clashes have left over 200 injured and over 20 people dead, expatriates said they are worried as the whole debate has now taken on communal overtones, with reports of people being attacked based on their religion.
Appealing to the people of his hometown to stay united in these tough times, Dubai resident Nadeem Hasan said: "I have been staying in the UAE for many years and we have seen peace and harmony among the communities of different backgrounds. However, what is happening in Delhi is disheartening, especially for those of us who hail from the same city. The people of the city should protect each other and stand for each other. This is the beauty of our country and Delhi sees people from across the country who live and work together. India has been known for long for its unity in diversity and has shown exemplary brotherhood. We stand by the people of Delhi in these tough times and hope that we shall be able to overcome these times as we have faith in our country and its people."
Seema Ansari, whose in-laws and cousins reside in New Delhi, said the very thought of riots and violence is making her nervous. "The situation is very volatile and tense in Delhi. Our folks in Delhi have been spending sleepless nights not knowing when the situation may spiral out of control as rioters are randomly attacking houses. I have been closely following the news on social media platforms that are inundated with photographs, videos and accounts that paint a chilling image of the last few days - of mobs beating and firing unarmed people on streets. We hope wisdom prevails and the Indian administration takes charge and immediately restores peace in the city."
Abu Dhabi resident Meraj Siddiqui, a graduate from Jamia Millia Islamia university in New Delhi, said his close friends who were staying in one of the areas that were attacked by the mob escaped from danger as they were away for a couple of days. "My close friend and his wife were lucky enough to escape the violence. However, two of their neighbours were killed in this mindless violence. I am scared for my family and friends and have been calling them/messaging them constantly. All I can do now is pray and appeal people to restrain themselves and not get provoked by hate speeches."

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