Thousands Flee Southern India Amid Rumors of Ethnic Violence

Posted August 16th, 2012 at 6:35 am (UTC-5)
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Thousands of Indians from the country's northeast have fled the southern city of Bangalore following rumors of impending attacks in retaliation for recent ethnic clashes in their home state.

Railway authorities added extra cars to trains heading to Assam state to handle the crush of passengers.

Officials say they are investigating the source of the rumors, which were said to have spread through social media and text messages.

Clashes between members of the Bodo tribe and Bengali Muslim settlers in Assam have killed more than 50 people and displaced 400,000 since late July.

The violence has calmed, but there have been outbreaks of fighting in the past few days.

Animosity and accusations of land-stealing have long simmered in the region between members of the ethnic Bodo community and the thousands of mostly Bengali Muslim settlers, many of whom came from the former East Pakistan before it became Bangladesh in 1971.