Several Kashmiri students residing in Punjab have alleged that they were attacked on Sunday, 24 October, just after India suffered a heavy defeat in its match against Pakistan in the T20 World Cup.
The incidents of dispute have been reported from two educational institutes in the state – Bhai Gurdas Institute of Engineering and Technology in Punjab's Sangrur district, and Rayat Bahrat University in Kharar in Mohali district.
At least 10 Kashmiri students were reported injured in the incidents, of which four belonged to the Rayat-Bahra University, news agency IANS reported.
Videos being shared on social media showed broken chairs, upturned beds in the students' hostel rooms, and some photos of the injured people
One of the students at the Bhai Gurdas engineering college, in a video said, "We were watching the match here. UP waale barged in. We came here to study. We are also Indian. You can see what was done to us. Are we not Indians? So what does Modi say?"
'Students Raised Azaadi Slogans', Says Cop
A senior police official of Sangrur, speaking to The Indian Express, said, “There are about 90 Kashmiri students and around 30 students from UP and Bihar in the (Bhai Gurdas) college. Kashmiri students stay in 2 wings of the hostel. While the match was on, the students cheered when Pakistan was hitting runs. They also raised azadi slogans.”
As per the police official, a tussle had subsequently broken out between the students of the institute. Punjab police officials had arrived at the college soon after and the situation was brought under control, NDTV reported.
Speaking to news agency ANI, Jitendra Singh, DSP Sangrur called the incident a scuffle and said that the dispute had occurred between supporters of both the sides but had been resolved since.
'Distressing': Omar Abdullah Urges Punjab CM Channi to Probe Attacks
National Conference leader Omar Abdullah, in a tweet on Monday, urged Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Channi and the state police to investigate the incidents of assault against Kashmiri students.
“It is distressing to hear about the incidents of physical & verbal assault against some Kashmiri students in a college in Punjab last night. I request @CHARANJITCHANNIji to direct @PunjabPoliceInd to look in to this & also to reassure the students studying in Punjab,” he said.
J&K Students Association Prez Demands Arrest of Those Involved
“Kashmiri students who were assaulted in Sangrur and Kharar Mohali told me that they were rescued by the locals and other Punjabi students. Students from Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Haryana had barged into their rooms, thrashed them and went on a rampage,” Nasir Khuehami, the national spokesperson J&K Students Association, said in a tweet.
"We demand immediate arrest of all those involved in the assault on Kashmiri students and ensure adequate arrangements for safety, security of our students. The Attack on Kashmiri students by some goons is a worrying factor for the students," he added, tagging Chief Minister Charanjit Channi and DGP Punjab Police in his tweet.
In a press release, the association also condemned the "unwarranted and unjustified attack" and said that they have taken up the matter with J&K Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha.
(With inputs from NDTV, IANS and The Indian Express)