A day after Monika Khangembam, a north-eastern woman in New Delhi, alleged that she has been racially harassed by an immigration officer at the New Delhi airport, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj apologised saying she would ask Home Minister Rajnath Singh to ensure immigration officials undergo a sensitisation programme.
Monika Khangembam - I am sorry to know this. Immigration is not with me./1— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) July 10, 2016
I will speak to my senior colleague Shri @rajnathsingh ji to sensitise Immigration officials at the airport./2— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) July 10, 2016
In a Facebook post, Khangembam 'humiliated' her by repeatedly asking questions about her nationality.
She said that the officer looked at her passport and said she doesn't look Indian.
When Khangembam told him she hailed from Manipur, he allegedly asked her to name the states Manipur shared its border with. "I said I was really getting late and he goes like, "aircraft aapko chodke kahi nahi jaa rahi. Aaram se jawab do" (the aircraft isn't leaving without you. You can answer at ease.)
Khangembam was en-route to Seoul for a global women's conference.
"It was like it was his mission to make me realise my 'Indianness' and he thought he was being funny. I was running late and felt I was giving in to the bully. Spoiled my night," she wrote in the FB post.
However, after her post went viral, several commented saying that she is playing a 'victim card.'
In response to the attacks, in another post, she wrote: "Me and a lot of people from North East have constantly faced subtle racist jibes whether in the form of a sarcastic remark, smile, or attitude... Maybe this time it was something tangible so I could express it."
"Sadly you have to be killed to prove there is racism. (Richard Loitam, Nido Taniam) (sic)," she wrote, referring to racist attacks on those from the northeast in Delhi.
In December 2014, a group of men in Gurgaon brutally assaulted a 29-year-old man from Manipur.
That same year, 19-year-old Nido Taniam succumbed to 'serious injuries' after being brutally beaten in Delhi's Lajpat Nagar locality.