Troubled by the reports of violence against Indian-origin people in South Africa, India reached out to President Cyril Ramaphosa’s Government, appealing for the safety of its people.
India’s foreign minister, Dr S Jai Shankar, spoke to his South African counterpart Naledi Pandor amid reports of turmoil in the country that has seen violence against the people of Indian origin.
After the conversation with Mr Pandor, Dr Jaishank said that early restoration of normalcy and peace is the overriding priority of the South African Government.
“Appreciate the conversation with South African Foreign Minister Naledi Pandor today. She assured that her Government was doing its utmost to enforce law and order. Early restoration of normalcy and peace was the overriding priority,” tweeted Dr Jaishankar
The violence that broke out in South Africa in the recent weeks following the arrest of former president Jacob Zuma for his failure to appear at a corruption inquiry has killed over 100 people.
The rampant looting and arson have left the country in chaos as the Government has deployed the army to control the situation.
There were reports of attacks targeting people of Indian origin, which forced the Zulu king Misuzulu KaZwelithini to support Indians.
“Our Indian brothers are our neighbours, and we have the second biggest population of Indians in KwaZulu-Natal outside of India, and through that, we have had certain people who have come to us to say thank you to the Zulu nation and to the Zulu royal family that you are living with our Indian brothers in peace,” he was quoted as saying by Indian news agency PTI.
According to the 2011 census, 2.5 per cent of South Africa’s population is of Indian origin as more than 1.2 million Indians who migrated at different points of time live there in Durban, Capetown, Johannesburg and other major cities.