As opposition parties condemned the police action against non Kashmiri students at NIT campus in Srinagar, a two-member team from the Union HRD ministry on Wednesday held consultation with officials of the engineering institute. Several students were injured in police lathicharge on Tuesday evening.
Here’s what has happened at NIT campus so far
March 31, Clash over celebrations of India’s defeat: After India’s defeat against West Indies in the World T20 semifinal, some Kashmiri students celebrated the exit of India from the tournament. The non-Kashmiri students inside the campus took strong objection over the celebration after India’s defeat. Clashes broke out between the local and non-Kashmiri students, leaving few injured.
April 1, Protest march by non Kashmiri students: In reaction to the celebrations by Kashmiri students following India’s defeat, non-Kashmiri students waved the tricolour on campus and tried to hoist it near NIT’s administrative block. They shouted slogans like ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai’, ‘Hindustan Zindabad’ and ‘Pakistan Murdabad’. On the other hand, the Kashmiri students raised slogans like ‘Hum Kya Chahte Azadi’. BJP MP Tarun Vijay lauded the “patriotic students” for teaching separatists “a good lesson” by waving the national flag inside campus. The unrest forced NIT authorities to suspend classes.
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- Kashmir University students protest against alleged beating of local students at NIT
April 2, Students assured of normalcy, safety: NIT Director Rajat Gupta assured students, faculty and parents that the temporary situation arising out of tensions from disappointment at the outcome of the cricket match March 31 had been overcome. The situation on the campus and at the hostels was normal, and academic activities would continue on Monday. The Director, NIT Srinagar, assured all concerned that there is no cause for apprehension and students are safe and secure. The HRD Ministry said the district administration and local authorities had extended the fullest cooperation, enabling the situation to be contained.
April 4, Classes resume: The classes resumed with a heavy deployment of police and CRPF personnel. Director of NIT Dr. Rajat Gupta said the situation is normal at the campus and all the scheduled events in the campus were held without any hassle. “Security is our top priority,” he said.
April 5, Fresh trouble, police violence: Trouble erupted on campus again as protesting students tried to leave the campus, leading to a confrontation with the police. A group of engineering students staged a protest march inside the campus. Police claimed that students holding placards and banners tried to leave the campus. The students, however, alleged that police used brute force and seized the Tricolour they were carrying during the protest. They accused the policemen of barging into hostels and beating up students. CRPF deployed on the campus. Home Minister Rajnath Singh called up Jammu and Kashmir CM Mehbooba Mufti and discussed the situation with her.
April 6, Politics begins: HRD ministry team rushed to NIT. Politics begun. Kejriwal tweeted that BJP is beating those who are “chanting Bharat Mata ki Jai” in Kashmir, while doing the same against those “who are not” raising the slogan in the rest of the country.
Omar Abdullah suggested that rushing a team from HRD ministry to NIT and replacing state police with the CRPF hinted at Centre’s lack of confidence in Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti.
— ANI (@ANI_news) April 6, 2016
— ANI (@ANI_news) April 6, 2016
Hitting out at the PDP-BJP government for the police lathicharge on outstation students in NIT Kashmir, a body representing Kashmiri Pandits said it’s an “eye-opener” for the Centre and demanded assurance from the Prime Minister on safety of the students in the Valley.