Crimes against North Easterners have been rising steadily in Delhi since 2011, reaching a high of 139 this year, said a Delhi police officer, following the murder of a scholar from the North East.

Kashung Zingran Kengoo, a 33-year-old PhD scholar from Manipur, was found dead on Wednesday with severe head injuries and his throat slit open. The police believe that Kengoo – who finished his doctorate from the Tata Institute of Social Sciences in Mumbai – might have known the killer since there were no signs of forced entry and his possessions were not missing.

The murder is part of a trend of rising crime, particularly hate crime, against North Easterners. In 2011, a total of 27 cases of violence against North Easterners were registered in Delhi. The next year, such cases increased to 44, and in 2013 to 73. This year, there have already been 139 such instances of violence.

“The Delhi Police has received 847 telephonic complaints this year, out of which 645 were about serious charges, including molestation, assault, rape and murder,” the senior police officer said. “But since most complainants do not register an official complaint, just 139 of the 847 complaints got turned into first information reports.”