Srinagar: Hundreds of Kashmir University (KU) students demonstrated at the campus to show solidarity with Kashmiri National Institute of Technology students, who had been beaten up by students from various parts of India on Thursday night after India’s loss in the world cup T20.
“The NIT incident shows we are not safe in our homes. Nobody can dictate to us on how to react to the results of a cricket match,” a student (name withheld) told the gathering.
The students demanded immediate action against the culprits and safety for Kashmiri students, who are in minority at NIT.
The students carried placards, which read “No IIT, No NIT, only Freedom” and “No AIIMS and No IIM, only Freedom”.
The protesters chanted ‘We want freedom and Kaun Karega Tarjumani Syed Ali Shah Geelani, (Who is our leader, Syed Ali Shah Geelani).
Following the incident, the authorities had closed the NIT and asked Kashmiri students to vacate the hostel. The institution will be opened on Monday.
Meanwhile, a statement issued by the Kashmir University Students Union said the incident should serve as “an eye opener for all”.
“The hegemonic atmosphere created by the outsiders with full support of Indian forces and the state establishment is an extension of the policy of strengthening the occupation and control on Kashmiris,” the statement reads.
“The conversion of Regional Engineering College (REC), Srinagar, into an NIT was in itself a conspiracy to get hold of educational institutes in Kashmir to create mini settlements of outsiders, which will ultimately change the demography of the students joining these institutes in favour of India,” the statement said.
The Union, which has been banned in the campus, said the loss of the engineering college has reduced the number of “Kashmiri students to less than 20% of the number a decade earlier”.