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DMK’s political strategist Prashant Kishor insists that there is video proof of Biharis being attacked, even as TN police say state is ‘peaceful’

Kishor had said that while some videos of attacks being shared on social media were fake and unrelated, some migrant workers from Bihar were indeed attacked and said he would release videos. Tamil Nadu Police, however, have denied reports of any such attack.

In wake of reports of alleged attacks on Bihari migrant workers in Tamil Nadu, DMK’s poll strategist Prashant Kishor on Sunday released a video stating that the attacks were real and should not be ignored by the Tamil Nadu government. He said that Tamil Nadu police and the ruling leaders of Bihar have disapproved of the incident calling it fake, but the attacks need to be looked into.

Tamil Nadu DGP Sylendra Babu denied the assault on Bihari workers and issued a statement on Thursday, March 2 claiming that Bihari migrant workers were not being attacked in Tamil Nadu. He said he had reached out to his counterpart in Bihar, DGP RS Bhatti, and refuted the reports being shared in the media and social media.

“The DGP of Tamil Nadu has denied of any such attacks on the migrant workers. But the incidents are real. The DMK government in Tamil Nadu has also disapproved of these incidents. I will post the correct videos” Prashant Kishor said while addressing a press conference on March 6.

On March 5, Kishor quoted a tweet by Tamil Nadu police who had shared a video of an attack from February 16. In the video, a man could be seen being beaten on a train by some Tamil-speaking individuals. Kishor quoted the tweet and said, “This video has been shared by Tamil Nadu Railway Police on 16 February. The DGP of Tamil Nadu Government should also inform about the status of this FIR registered in GRP Chennai.”

According to the reports, Kishor also alleged that Bihar’s Deputy Chief Minister Tejasvi Yadav misled the members of the assembly on the issue. He said he would expose Yadav of lying and would release original videos of migrant workers attacked in Tamil Nadu.

“Bihar’s Deputy Chief Minister has said that these are fake videos, but I will release the real video in a few days,” Prashant Kishor said. He meanwhile agreed that some of the journalists shared the wrong video but added that facts of the incident shall not be ignored.

“The ruling leaders of Bihar are attempting to disprove the incident by claiming that no such incident occurred. In two days, I will post the correct video,” he went on to add. He also said that such incidents have been happening in the state of Tamil Nadu for the past four months.

It is pertinent to note that a report by the Hindi daily Dainik Bhaskar that was published on March 2, 2023, had earlier claimed that as many as 15 people have lost their lives in “Talibani” style attacks being carried out against the Hindi-speaking migrant labourers in the state. However, the Hindi newspaper has retracted that report and now, in its updated version, presented testimonies of the migrant labourers who have said that they are fleeing Tamil Nadu because of the violence that has been unleashed on Hindi-speaking migrant labourers in the state because of their linguistic identity.

In viral undated videos, some Hindi-speaking migrant workers claim that they are beaten and assaulted even on the trains. The Police also booked a journalist from Dainik Bhaskar and BJP leader Prashant Patel Umrao over reportage on the viral videos.

The matter was also raised in the Bihar assembly where Bharatiya Janata Party strongly objected to the deaths and slammed Bihar state CM Nitish Kumar over the incident. The BJP leaders also walked out of the Assembly as a part of the protest and demanded a probe into the incident.

However, Tamil Nadu DGP Sylendra Babu denied the attacks and issued a statement on Thursday, March 2 claiming that Bihari migrant workers were not being attacked in Tamil Nadu. He said he had reached out to his counterpart in Bihar, DGP RS Bhatti, and refuted the reports being shared in the media and social media.

“The videos that are being circulated on social media are four months old and show clashes between migrant workers belonging to Bihar and Jharkhand. Another video is of a murder that took place in Coimbatore outside a court complex last month. No attacks on migrant workers have taken place in Tamil Nadu,” Babu had said.

Tamil Nadu police further tweeted on the matter saying that rumours were being spread on social media and other media platforms that North Indians and Hindi-speaking people are being assaulted in Tamil Nadu. “You are advised not to spread such false information, failing which legal action will be taken”, it warned.

Update: The claims about murders and killing as well as the fingers of the Hindi-speaking migrant labourers being chopped and the labourers being locked in a room and hanged, which were reported by Dainik Bhaskar were retracted after the incident caused nationwide controversy. Since our reports were based on Dainik Bhaskar’s report and were reproduced here crediting them explicitly, we have removed those claims as well because Bhaskar doesn’t seem to be standing by it anymore.

Ayodhra Ram Mandir special coverage by OpIndia

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