Kashmiri students across the country fear for security after Pulwama attack

Unrest in Kashmir after the attack. Credit: Greater Kashmir
Unrest in Kashmir after the attack. Credit: Greater Kashmir

Retaliation attacks following the Pulwama suicide bombing are being reported all over the country, especially among college students and teachers.

After the attack which martyred 44 CRPF jawans, protests, arrests, sedition charges, and incidents of violence are being reported, which have affected many Kashmiri students in private and government institutes.

Several Kashmiri students in Delhi have reported incidents of harassment, even as police asserted that security had been enhanced in the national capital and they would ensure the safety of all citizens.

A Kashmiri student from Jamia Millia Islamia, who did not wish to be identified, said, “Just the fact that one is a Kashmiri, irrespective of his ideology or leanings, is enough to put one’s life to risk. It is happening across the country. Kashmiri students are being harassed and hounded, be it Ambala or Bangalore. We really fear for our security here too.”

JNU activist Shehla Rashid, who hails from Kashmir, said, “Throughout India, mobs are attacking Kashmiri students, verbally abusing them, asking for them to be expelled and filing false cases against them. The pretext being given in each case is that they said Pakistan Zindabad and even police is buying into these false claims.”

Representational Image. CREDIT: Scroll.in
Representational Image. CREDIT: Scroll.in

A Kashmiri student studying in a Bengaluru college was Saturday arrested for allegedly hailing the Jaish militant while another from Dehradun was booked for allegedly sending WhatsApp messages supporting the Pulwama attack.

News gathering agency GNS reported that it received distress calls from many aspirants held up in various states due to the prevailing situation.

Dehradun-based Baba Farid Institute of Technology (BFIT) has submitted a letter, stating that no new Kashmiri student will be admitted in the upcoming session. Multiple incidents of protests and open threats to Kashmiris have been reported outside the DAV PG College in Dehradun.

Five days after a Kashmiri student was assaulted on its campus at Gharuan, Mohali, the Aadesh Institute of Technology and Management authorities have decided to close the college for 10 days to upgrade its security infrastructure.

Tahseen Gul, a second year BTech student of Chitkara University in Himachal Pradesh, was arrested for allegedly “glorifying” Pulwama suicide bomber Aadil Ahmed Dar on campus. Five other Kashmiris along with Tahseen were detained and questioned by the police.

Meanwhile, four female paramedical students of Kashmiri-origin have been slapped with sedition charges after being suspended from the National Institute of Medical Science, Jaipur for allegedly celebrating the Pulwama attack by posting “anti-national” messages on Whatsapp, officials said on Sunday.

A 28-year-old Kashmiri man, who allegedly shouted anti-India slogans at Delhi’s Jantar Mantar, was beaten up by a group of people who had gathered there to mourn the killing of the CRPF troopers.

A college teacher at Icon’s Academy Junior College in Guwahati was suspended for a Facebook post over the attack, which condemned the attack but also blamed the Indian Army for atrocities on civilians in Jammu and Kashmir

Situation is tense in the states of Uttarakhand, which houses many Kashmiri students, and Madhya Pradesh. The police have issued instructions to all district police officials to ensure their security.

On Sunday, the Kashmir Valley was under a shutdown as a mark of protest against the alleged attacks and harassment of Kashmiris outside the region. All prominent political leaders and separatists spoke out against these incidents, with former chief minister and National Conference leader Omar Abdullah warning that these actions will further alienate Kashmiris.

Jammu after curfew was imposed on February 16. CREDIT: PTI
Jammu after curfew was imposed on February 16. CREDIT: PTI

Students all across the country are getting affected directly or indirectly.

Aspirants scheduled to appear in the examination for the posts of Probationary Officer and Banking Associates on Monday urged the Jammu and Kashmir Bank authorities to postpone the tests in view of tension over Pulwama attack.

This is not the first time that Kashmiri students are being attacked after a terrorist attack in Kashmir.

Read this Hindustan Times report on students’ attack  after unrest in Srinagar in 2016.

Compiled by: Ankita Marwaha


Also read: Lessons in hate: Why Kashmiri students are being targeted on campuses across India