About 1,200 students from Jammu and Kashmir were allegedly asked to vacate Pacific University in Udaipur district following a clash with local students. Almost three weeks later, they are still waiting to be called back, though many are apprehensive about returning.
On Thursday, a delegation of about 70 students and their parents met J&K BJP president Jugal Kishore Sharma and apprised him of the issue. “They are scared about returning. We are taking it up with party leaders in Rajasthan and hopefully it will be addressed soon,” said BJP’s state secretary Pawan Khajuria.
On September 12, a student from J&K reportedly protested about an unclean plate at the mess of the university. The mess in-charge allegedly slapped him, leading to a clash between supporters from both sides. Supporters of the mess in-charge, a local, allegedly told local students that “the Kashmiris indulged in anti-national sloganeering, inciting them to attack us”, said Rashpal Singh, a student of BTech, over phone from Udhampur.
To control the situation, police was deployed and the district administration reportedly asked the students to vacate the university. “We went there on the PM’s scholarship. Even before the clash, locals taunted us that we were studying for free,” said a student. The students are worried about their careers. “I was informed that they have restarted the classes without us,” a student said.
“It was not a communal issue. It was just that some Kashmiri Rajputs were involved. The warden had called the local students. No FIR from either side was registered, though one FIR on a complaint by the university was lodged,” said Udaipur SP Rajender Prasad Goyal. “The university was closed for 15 days and the students are welcome now. We will provide them protection if they need it,” he added. University officials declined to take questions.