The Ministry of Home Affairs on Monday instructed all states to ensure the sensitization of law enforcement agencies to take action against harassment of people from the North-East region by linking them to the COVID-19 pandemic.The Ministry stated that several cases have occurred where people of the North-East region including athletes and sports persons have been subjected to racial discrimination amid the virus outbreak. Earlier in the day, Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal took cognizance of one such incident where a Delhi man on a bike spat at a Manipuri girl and shouted 'Corona.'
In its letter addressed to all chief secretaries and Director Generals of all states and union territories, the Ministry stated, "It is requested that all law enforcing agencies in your State/UT may please be sensitized to take appropriate action in cases of harassment when these (cases) are reported."
MHA writes to all States to ensure sensitization of law enforcement agencies to take action against harassment of people of North East by linking them to #COVID19outbreak in India.@PMOIndia@HMOIndia@MoHFW_INDIA pic.twitter.com/K2SD3vZst1— Spokesperson, Ministry of Home Affairs (@PIBHomeAffairs) March 23, 2020
As of date, 415 positive cases have been reported of the pandemic Coronavirus (COVID-19) with Maharashtra reporting the highest at 89. Seven deaths have been reported to date. India has suspended all visas and barred travel from Afghanistan, Philippines, EU, UK, China, Malaysia and mandatory 14-day quarantine from several other countries and shut down over 75 districts across the nation.
India has also closed the India-Pakistan border and restricted passenger movement at the border with Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal, and Myanmar. The government is monitoring all suspected cases and issued preventive advisories with Bihar, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Assam, Delhi, Kerala, Jammu - Kashmir declaring the disease an epidemic shutting down all educational institutions, monuments, parks, gyms, swimming pools, pubs and banning large gatherings.