On the eve of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to the state, the Chennai city police had detained about 100 people from the North East, besides Tibetans, residing in the city.
According to city police sources, a large number of people from Mizoram, Manipur and Nagaland were detained in various police stations across Chennai in view of the Chinese president’s visit.
“More people were detained at Koyambedu, Saidapet and St Thomas Mount police stations as compared to other stations,” the sources said.
Meanwhile, Chennai Mizo Association’s general secretary PC Michael said that though they were warned about the Chinese president’s visit, they were not told that the police would detain them.
“Since we look a bit like the Tibetans or the Chinese, we were warned to carry our identity cards, including Aadhaar, during these two days of Modi and Xi’s visit, so that we are not mistaken as Tibetans. But, even though we all carried ID proofs, the police detained at least six Mizo people,” said Michael.
He added that the detained Mizo people were left only after a representative from their community visited the police station and sought their release.
A senior police officer justified the move citing security reasons and said they had intelligence inputs that Tibetans could protest against the Chinese president’s visit.
Meanwhile, the Tibetans, detained on Friday, were released only on Saturday evening. According to one of the detained Tibetans, the police had asked them to give it in writing that they were not tortured or humiliated during their detention period.