Monday, July 23, 2007

Is it the case of Good Intentions going Wrong?

Like any North-Easterner, when I first read this and some blog reaction over this issue, I thought, why Delhi Police, why? Why and what made them (Delhi Police) think that we northeasterner are uncivilized and insensitive towards the local populace? How our food habits are threat to social order? How it was deduced that the women from the region are of ‘loose morals’, always ‘provocatively dressed’ inviting rape? Why this guidelines for the people of Northeast alone, and not for others? Why this ‘social profiling’?

But when I went through this controversial 20 pages booklet titled Security tips for North East students/Visitors in Delhi published in an endeavor towards their ‘With You, For You, Always’ by West District Delhi Police which has had the Delhi Police accused of ‘social profiling’ or ‘othering’, of implying people of the North East as uncivilized and women of having ‘loose morals’; the fact that it was penned by an officer from North East made me ponder over the whole issue again.

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The booklet contains tips on Traveling to Delhi.., Finding accommodation at Delhi, Admission to Institutions/Colleges, What to do when in distress, Caution for parents in North East, Personal safety, etc., etc., among others besides the tips on Food Habits and Dress Code (reproduced below) which led to this entire outrage.


  1. Bamboo shoots, Akhuni and other smelly dishes should be prepared without creating ruckus in neighbourhood.
  2. Your party should not disturb next door.
  3. Loud music should be stopped/discouraged after 10.00 P.M. (Supreme Court’s Order)


  1. When in rooms do as Roman does.
  2. Revealing dress be avoided.
  3. Avoid lonely road/by-lane when dressed scantily.
  4. Dress according to sensitivity of local populace.

Sans North-East in the title, the tip doesn’t seem that bad as is made out to be and in fact the tips would be helpful for others as well who are visiting or studying at Delhi. But the fact that it was especially drafted for people of North East put the people in poor light almost akin to people of the region being uncivilized, insensitive and of poor dressing sense, always in bad taste- to be told how to dress and what to eat.

And while drafting those guidelines, Robin Hibu (DCP-West), an IPS Officer from Arunachal Pradesh, wouldn't have anticipated that these security tips would snowball into a major 'ruckus', inviting strong criticism from the Northeast Students community at Delhi; after all, all he intended was only an 'elderly-brother' advice to Northeastern students and visitors from Northeast to remain safe at Delhi. In his own words

"I wanted to share my experience with young students. I have advised the students to dress according to the sensitivity of the local population and be wary of going to unknown places. When you come from that far, you tend to have difficulties in adjusting. It is not an order, just an elder-brotherly advice. If they don’t want to follow it, it’s up to them."

Now I wonder, if it is the case of all the good intentions going wrong, may be because of choosing wrong media (in the form of Booklet by Delhi Police) and with wrong authority (Police Officer)? An advice or tip for staying safe at Delhi from Robin Hibu, a fellow North-Easterner would have been much more appreciated than from Robin Hibu, an IPS Officer of Delhi Police and not in the form of booklet which put the people from North East in poor light.

(Cross posted)


  • raka

    Hibu is a moron who has embarassed us all.Trying to cosy up to his masters in Delhi he has overstepped his brief.I never had any doubt that his calibre was not up to the mark(true of all Ias/Ips types--all mugging no brain)even when he was in ap--i.e.very crude way of operating(though effective).

  • anon_tanii_gal

    Who cares !Why couldnt he come out with a book to educate uncouth foul speaking north indians on subtlety, manners and tolerance towards other cultures.

  • AG

    I had just another thought.....was it a publicity gimmick by Hibu?


    Let me make myself clear first, I'm in no way advocating for Mr. Robin Hibu here when I say "Is it the case of good intentions going wrong?". As the booklet was penned by a fellow North-Easterner (mind you, a fellow North-Easterner and not fellow Arunachalee),I only tried to look at the issue from another perspective. Whatever intentions Mr. Hibu had, be it good or otherwise, the fact that book was published just for the people of NE without correct words put him in the wrong perspective.

  • anon_tanii_gal

    Well this booklet and controversy has only served to widen the gap between them and us (north indians and north easterners).North Indians will always be prejudiced against north easterners in regards to freedom, gender equality (dressing sense ,definition of morals), background .Cultures are bound to clash especially when its between freedom and restriction .Its a fact of life.
    I dont think we need our own (tanii) brethren advocating some strangers definition of whats right and whats wrong .As a north easterner , doesnt he have any self respect or pride?Not very intelligent ?or does he just want to cosy up to his superiors and stay in their good books . Maybe a combination of both

  • AG

    It's really unfortunate that this had to come from tanii brethren. He should have thought twice before jumping to conclusion what's right and what's wrong for the people of NE and coming out with such booklet with wrongly phrased words.

  • Anonymous

    serves him right!.hes been been lauded too much for his achievements!..hes too consumed with self importance that he doesnt even realize the tips he gave wouldnt go down well with the ppple its meant for.its time he got his inflated ego pricked a bit!!!! though i seriuosly doubt if it has made any differance to!..n hes never even made any effort to get in touch with the tani students in delhi!!!!

  • Nightscape

    Our Food - Smelly
    Our Dress - Revealing/vulgar
    Our Habits- Loud Music and Parties

    An advertisement agency assigned with the task of demeaning the whole region would not have done as good as job as Hibu Robin has done. He might not have meant to sound so stupid; let us even grant him the benefit of the doubt as a good-hearted but ill-worded do-gooder; but in effect the image he has conveyed of himself is that of a classic, ingratiating "Uncle Tom". Maybe he would feel these descriptions undeserved, but one does expect better of a a supposedly educated person, that too one of our own.

  • Anonymous

    Mr. Raka who do you think you are? Have u proved anything of yourself in this life until now? Please think twice before u fire salvos at Hibu Robin.
    I'll bat for Robin Hibu and agree with every wording in that booklet. You r definitely one of those kind of youths these days who are lost in romantic korean movies, booze, cinema and discotheques. Mr. Robin Hibu is a role model for all of us in Arunachal Pradesh. He became an IPS officer in times when your father was probably struggling to hold a pen. This gentleman has proved himself in life (unlike you) and we shouldn't doubt his intellectuality. He published that in good intention and its people like you (dumbs) who fail to see reason. I do agree wid everything written in that booklet though I am an Arunachalee. I do beleive that we should do away wid smelly food slowly. You get bamboo shoot even in US and Australia, but they are processed in such a way that they do not offend those who don't eat them. Now you may want to criticize Hibu Robin for all the supposedly awful stuffs abt NE people but know that our fellow Indians are already aware of everything (and much more)written in that brouchure. What's the harm in accepting that our girls are scantily dressed...that's good thing coz that shows how liberal our society is as compared to mainstream India. Our girls are in a much better position than most Indian women. We do not practice female foeticide. We do not burn brides for dowry. Our girls equally ditch men as do our men ditch them! So dude, cheer up and check your verabl diarrhoea against Hibu Robin. If you think you are the man with the last word, please write civil service exams and I am sure you'll start respecting this guy.
    I am a Nyishi but I am proud of Hibu Robin and regard him. Please don't be harsh on him. AG pls don't bother me again by being on the wrong side of my opinion. I already know you and your poor intellectuality.

  • Anonymous

    anonymous you are same NYISHI SON, rite friend?

    you are disgrace to nyishi talking dirty and fighting every even take fathers name you shameless idiot.i think i know you are relate to former NES president who is educate his sons arrogant manner rite?one of his arrogant son could not pass doctor specilist but pass civil services some days ago rite?

  • Anonymous

    U r truly, unmistakably, definitely a SCHMUCK....good for nothing and useless dude. And u don't want legal trouble for defaming someone important on a public forum like u. You have already committed the first blunder. Your blog will be closed now..... bye bye u nobody.

  • wiian

    There's evidently much truth in the 3rd comment above this one, but hey, whats going on here? Everyone's entitled to his/ her opinion. You can't convince others by shouting or calling names. It will only hurt you bad.

    haven't read something interesting/ amusing in a long time. I need to get that booklet.

  • Rome Mele

    Ya, Thats why we are Arunachalis.
    Convincingly true!!!

  • AG

    Oh! no not again...

    @anonymous1 (whoever you are),
    I respect your views on the booklet issued by West District Delhi Police but you have caught me on the wrong side of your opinion. You start name turn gets uncomplimentary remarks from others (anonymous2-with a request not to indulge in trolls)...puts the blame to others (me), which reminds of a saying in Hindi 'Ulta Chor Kotwal ko Daante'.

    On your comments on my intellectuality...(me laughs)...Are you sure?;)...I'm glad that you keep coming back to read posts by an intellectually challenged person like me....(me laughs again)...Thanks dude, for that. Hope I was not caught in wrong side of your opinion....LoL

  • Anonymous

    india is a democratic country as long as we do anything n does not harm the other person directly or indirectly i feel its ok....regarding habits n culture cuisine its the same..even indian foods do smell bad..wats wrong..look at the north indian festivals how disturbin they r wit those bands n the morning bajans from the temple at the higest pitch...wat abt the i need to say more abt this HOLI fest..its wild...its a festival where ppl r killed..jus recently a gal of 6 yrs is raped n killled..r we not done yet..was the child wearin skirts n exposin herself..does wear short skirt means that the person has to rape or wat..where is the law to protect..every rapist is left wit light punishment...n delhi itself has the most unique rape cases..father rapin daughter,police rapin

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