India

Heart-warming response to Kashmiri students in distress after Pulwama attack

Sporadic incidents of violence, right wing protests and vicious social media campaign calling for Kashmiris to leave after the terror attack have opened floodgates of sympathy and support for them

PTI

NH Web Desk

Following incidents of violence against Kashmiri students and tradersreported from several parts of the country as a backlash to the Pulwama carnage, ordinary citizens and even the CRPF, which is mourning the loss of 44 of its men, came forward and offered help.

CRPF set up a “Madadgaar” helpline for Kashmiri students, traders and visitors presently out of the state to help them in distress.A CRPF Twitter handle, @CRPFmadadgaar, opened a toll-free number and SMS portal to assist any Kashmiri facing any harassment or difficulties in the aftermath of the attack. “#Kashmiri students and general public, presently out of #kashmir can contact @CRPFmadadgaar on 24x7 toll free number 14411 or SMS us at 7082814411 for speedy assistance in case they face any distress.

Several IPS officers also stepped forward and offered help on Twitter.

A large number of citizens in different cities also offered to open their homes and hearts to Kashmiris in distress and those who felt insecure and were looking for shelter.

Meanwhile, former J & K CM and National Conference vice-president Omar Abdullah tweeted that Kashmir was not just a piece of land and pointed out that by attacking Kashmiris, they were being told there was no place for them outside the Valley and no future in the mainland.

“Young Kashmiri students studying outside J&K should have been feted as examples of people who have stayed away from the politics and conflict in Kashmir, choosing instead to make a future for themselves. By attacking them, terrorising them & forcing them to find shelter they are being told there is no place for them outside the valley & no future in the mainland (sic),” Abdullah, former Chief Minister of the state, said in a series of tweets.

“Targeted violence against Kashmiris in various parts of the country only helps the perpetrators of terror and division. Kashmiris have rendered innumerable sacrifices fighting terrorism and violence. Reach out -- make them feel safe and protected,” Mayor of Srinagar, Junaid Azim Mattu said in Twitter post.

People’s Union For Civil Liberties (PUCL) Rajasthan has demanded security for all Kashmiri students in National Institute of Medical Science (NIMS) Jaipur district besides other universities and colleges in Rajasthan. NIMS, a private university, on Saturday suspended four paramedical students of Kashmiri origin for allegedly posting “anti-national” remarks after Pulwama attack.

Kavita Srivastava, the president of the Rajasthan chapter of the PUCL, has appealed distressed Kashmiri students in the state to contact her for assistance.

Dozens of Kashmiri students have left for their homes since Friday after being allegedly intimidated by mobs in Dehradun, IANS reported quoting police sources. “We have taken all steps to defuse the tense situation by deploying our personnel in and around the educational institutes,” Ashok Kumar, Director General of Police (DGP), Law and Order was quoted as saying.

DGP Kumar also denied media reports that some Kashmiri girls were trapped in their hostel for hours. “There were rumours yesterday that a few Kashmiri girls were trapped in a hostel in Dehradun for hours due to the presence of an angry mob. This is not true as the police sorted out the issue. Initially, there was some confusion regarding pro-Pakistan slogans raised by the Kashmiri girls, but later the matter was resolved by the police,” Kumar said.

The Home Ministry has also issued an advisory to all states/UTs to take necessary measures to ensure the safety and security of Kashmiri students following reports of students and other residents of Jammu and Kashmir experiencing threats and intimidation.

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