The Hyderabad resident who had assaulted a Nigerian student was arrested on Friday. Mohammed Gaffoor attacked Kazeem, a 23-year-old student of Nizam College, on Wednesday with an iron rod after the two argued over a parking spot in the city’s Banjar Hills locality, where both of them live, The Hindu reported.
Anjani Kumar of the Hyderabad Police ruled out racism as the motive behind the case and called it a mere misunderstanding. Earlier in the day, Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj had sought a report from the Telangana government in connection with the incident.
According to Banjara Hills Sub-Inspector K Krishnaiah, Kazeem used to park his car in Gaffoor’s allotted parking space instead of his own. After they argued over the issue, Gaffoor beat the Nigerian student with a rod. Kazeem sustained minor injuries, and the Banjara Hills Police registered a case against Gaffoor for the assault.
Chairman of the African Students Association in Telangana Emmanuel Omurunga said the police were not willing to help. “The situation in India is no longer safe for us,” he said. Spokesperson for the Ministry of External Affairs Vikar Swarup said Swaraj was monitoring the case.
News of the assault comes days after the African Group of Heads of Mission threatened to boycott the Centre’s Africa Day celebrations in Delhi following the murder of a Congolese man in the capital. Olivier Masonga Kitanda, who taught foreign languages at a private institute, was killed in Delhi’s Vasant Kunj area late on May 2. He reportedly got into an argument with a group of locals, after which the men attacked him violently with bricks and stones.