Omar warns against 'hounding' of Kashmiri students in JNU campus

The former J&K CM accused Centre of 'ruining their careers for the benefit of political expediency'.

Srinagar: Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister and working president of National Conference (NC), Omar Abdullah, on Wednesday said that harassment of Kashmiri students in Delhi is unacceptable and cautioned against making them “convenient scapegoats” in the JNU issue.

He said the “harassment” and “hounding” of Kashmiri students on the pretext of the JNU crackdown reeked of an all-too-familiar profiling of Kashmiris in the national capital.

“If the Delhi Police and the Home Ministry want to unleash a dictatorial and tyrannical crackdown on dissenting voices and students in Delhi, they should not make Kashmiri students convenient scapegoats and stigmatize them and in turn ruin their careers. This is unacceptable”, he said in a statement here.

Abdullah said, “There have been numerous instances in the past when the Delhi Police has cited ‘intelligence inputs’ to falsely implicate young Kashmiris only to be acquitted by the courts after years of incarceration”. He added, “Now this recent decision to hound Kashmiri students from JNU and other colleges seems to be another addition to this chapter. We express our resentment against this blanket stereotyping and maligning of Kashmiri students and demand that the Government of India desists from ruining their careers for the benefit of political expediency”.

The NC leader said such policies of selective persecution and profiling adds to the perception of alienation and isolation among the youth of the State.

“The message this type of policing sends out is disastrous and has severe long term implications on the psyche of our youth. Profiling and hounding Kashmiri students on one pretext or the other creates a deep sense of insecurity and apprehension among thousands of our students enrolled in universities across the country”. He termed it as “extremely unfortunate” and warned “We will not remain silent and allow their en-masse persecution”.

Meanwhile, independent lawmaker and leader of regional Awami Ittehad Party (AIP) Sheikh Abdur Rashid was on Wednesday detained by police along with dozens of his party men and supporters as they marched along the streets of Srinagar in solidarity with detained JNUSU leaders and against the recent killing of two students in Army and police firing in the State’s Pulwama district.

Chanting “Bravehearts of JNU, We are with you, we are with you”, “Dunya bhar mein shor hai, Delhi adam khor hai” and “Jis Kashmir ko khon se seencha, woh Kashmir hamara hai”, they tried to relocate to the City centre Lal Chowk but riot police came in their way and whisked them away in their vehicles. They were, however, released from a police station later.

Before his detention, Rashid who is also known as Engineer Rashid said that people of Jammu and Kashmir are thankful to all those ‘saner voices’ especially the youth who are raising their voice in favour of Kashmiris at JNU, Kolkata and other places. “Congress and BJP are trying to score the political points with regard to this uprising in the educated class of India but need to understand that the uprising is not for Congress or against BJP but the Indian youth has started feeling pain of Kashmiris,” he asserted. He added, “The protests being carried out in prestigious universities are being attended by students and scholars of all most of all states without caring for caste, creed and religion. As such New Delhi has lost the argument of blaming Pakistan in interfering into internal affairs of India”.

He also condemned attacks on media persons by “ultranationalist” lawyers and activists in Delhi court premises and said that world community should know “if these so called protectors of law, can mishandle and abuse those who have similar views as of them about Kashmir, what would they do with those who differ with them in their ideology and views”.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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