Srinagar: A day after a former student of Kashmir University’s Institute of Kashmir Studies (IKS) was killed in a gunfight with the army, the Institute faculty on Saturday took out a break from their schedule and went for a daylong picnic to Gulmarg, with the varsity’s acting Vice-Chancellor calling it “unfortunate”.
The slain Hizbul Mujahideen militant Tariq Parray, a resident of Laribal, Tral, in south Kashmir Pulwama district, who was killed on Thursday evening along with two other militants, had joined the IKS in 2013. He appeared in examination in 2013. However, he left the department after appearing in just one paper in the first semester.
On Saturday, when Kashmir Reader approached the IKS to further inquire about Tariq, the Institute was bolted from outside. It was learnt that the Institute had organized a picnic to Gulmarg. Around 40 people led by IKS Director Gul Mohammad Wani and including Assistant Professors—Sajad Padder, Mehmood-ur-Rashid Vaid and a non-state subject—had gone for day-long vacation to the picturesque spot.
Wani while talking to Kashmir Reader questioned the credibility of the slain student and the source of information. “So you are the one who had filed the story. I know the ba**+*d who provided you the details about that student…that donkey was a contractual lecturer in Political Science department. How did you report without talking to me,” said Wani.
As reported by Kashmir Reader on Saturday, IKS is a brainchild of former J&K Governor Lt Gen SK Sinha. The institute was modeled to counter insurgency and to bring younger generation of Kashmir “closer to Kashmiriyat”, the term coined by Sinha to describe the communal harmony in the Valley as it existed at the time of Partition. Through the IKS, Sinha wanted to promote “Sufi-Islam” in the Valley to “eliminate insurgency”, which he believed had its roots in “Islamic fundamentalism”.
Meanwhile, Kashmir University’s acting Vice-Chancellor Prof G M Shah said it was “unfortunate” that the IKS had organised picnic a day after one of its former students got killed.
“Leave aside politics, on humanitarian grounds the Institute shouldn’t have gone to Gulmarg. It’s quite unfortunate. They should have deferred it for some days. It wasn’t compulsory for them to go to picnic,” Shah told Kashmir Reader, adding that the slain militant had left the Institute half-way.
“We even condole the death of those pass-outs who studied in the varsity 25 years ago,” Shah added.