Srinagar: The continuous questioning of a Kashmir University (KU) scholar by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) in New Delhi evoked severe resentment on Thursday when dozens of students from the Central University of Kashmir (CUK) marched through the Srinagar-Jammu bypass at Nowgam.
The students took out a protest march against the NIA, which they termed an “intimidating agency” for “unnecessarily” harassing the student community of Kashmir.
Aala Fazli, a PhD scholar at the department of Pharmacy in KU, was questioned in New Delhi for the fourth consecutive day on Thursday by the NIA, which registered a case of alleged “funding to separatists in J&K” on May 30.
“Students from all departments at Campus-I gathered in the lawns denouncing the uncalled for questioning of Aala Fazli by NIA,” said a protesting student who was carrying a placard that read: “I am Aala Fazli”.
A protesting girl student told Kashmir Reader, “This is a wake-up call for the state government to stop harassing students. The NIA’s questioning of the respected KU PhD scholar should be halted forthwith.”
Carrying banners, the CUK students marched across the Srinagar-Jammu highway at Nowgam and entered CUK campus-III in the same area where students from other departments joined them.
“The protest by CUK students has demonstrated that all students of Kashmir are united, and we shall not sit silent until NIA questioning of Fazli is stopped,” a group of students said.
Fazli has been applauded by teachers at his department for his scientific temperament and scholarly behaviour. The NIA summons was issued last Friday and were served on him at his department by a policeman from Nigeen Police Station .
The questioning evoked massive anti-India, anti-NIA and pro-freedom slogans from students at KU for two consecutive days, over Tuesday and Wednesday, despite their being busy with their semester examinations. The protests spread to the Islamic University of Science and Technology on Wednesday, when students condemned the questioning of the scholar.
After coming under severe criticism from the student fraternity, KU authorities shot off letters to the J&K Governor, Chief Minister and Director General of Police over the NIA’s questioning Aala Fazli.
“This is fair injustice,” said a law student at CUK on Thursday, carrying a banner that read: “We stand with Aala Fazli”. “Is this the way the state is securing its future, by questioning a scholar?”
“This protest is in solidarity with the KU scholar, but this is unfortunate that a student has been summoned by the NIA for no reason,” the student added.