Srinagar: The Kashmiri students’ community of Jawaharlal Nehru University while extending support to their AMU counterparts have said that they have been made victims of the unfair, biased media trial and arbitrary action by the AMU Administration.
In a statement, Kashmiri students of JNU said, “Despite the Kashmiri students having exercised maximum restraint in the given situation in their university, the disciplinary and legal action against the Kashmiri students in AMU is arbitrary and uncalled for. We commend the brave response of the Kashmiri student community of AMU who have stood strong, in unity, against discriminatory attitude of the AMU authorities who instead of standing by its students have chosen to victimize the students.”
The statement added that the pressing of sedition charges speaks volumes about how academic lives of Kashmiris pursuing studies in Indian universities come under continued unwarranted harassment and persecution.
“Criminalization of a gathering of students of a certain identity is nothing but an act of deliberate targeting and maltreating of that community of students to isolate them and make them more vulnerable in the hostile environment of the university. Such a conduct by administration is a clear case of arbitrary use of power and bowing down of academia in front of biased and venomous TRP hungry media houses who have been crossing their limits of ethical journalism to demonize Kashmiris wherever possible.”
The statement pointed out that the attitude of the administration has led to risking of the careers of thousands of Kashmiri students enrolled in AMU.
“We, the Kashmiri student community of JNU, therefore demand immediate revocation of the suspension order and the withdrawal of the sedition charges against the Kashmiri students of AMU. The administration should also take responsibility of creating amicable conditions for the Kashmiri students in AMU in order to prevent further isolation of the Kashmiri students in the varsity and ensure that the students do not face further harassment in view of the hostile environment and students are able to continue their studies without having to fear for their lives.”
They added that the targeting of Kashmiri students across the Indian universities is not new and continued persecution of Kashmiri students continues in different forms.
“Such targeting has resulted in a sense of higher insecurity and led to anxiety among the Kashmiri students which is impacts the academic performances of the Kashmiri students. The continued instances of the Kashmiri students in Indian universities impacts the Kashmiri students located anywhere and leads to sense of mental unease. In such state of affairs there are hardly any options left for Kashmiri students to look for redressal of their grievances of any nature,” the statement added.
They also mentioned that such a behavior towards Kashmiri students also discourages prospective Kashmiri students to think of accessing educational opportunities in the universities located within the Union of India.
“However, we want to put it on record that such a behavior met out to Kashmiri students will neither discourage us from pursuing our academic goals nor can prevent us from excelling in our careers. Such behavior only reflects poorly on the universities which are unable to create encouraging and positive environment for the Kashmiri students,” the statement said.
After 1,200 Kashmiri students, currently studying at Aligarh Muslim University (AMU), threatened to quit the veracity for being deliberately scandalized, the support in solidarity has come from other academic institutions.
Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI) students have expressed serious concern over the targeting of their counterparts in the AMU after an allegation that they arranged a funeral in absentia of slain militant leader Manan Wani, a former scholar of the university.
They have condemned the initiation sedation charges against some of them.
In another case of solidarity, the students of Maulana Azad National Urdu University (MANUU) expressed anguish over the colonial charges levelled against Kashmiri students on “fabricated” issues at AMU.
Earlier, Kashmiri students of the Aligarh Muslim University, in a statement have said that the ‘circumstances of fear at AMU are increasing as we are told that more students are being named and framed with fake charges.’
“The sedition and other relevant charges against two Kashmiri scholars have not been withdrawn, and administration is creating more fear among the students,” the statement said which has been circulated through the Vice President of the Aligarh Muslim University Students’ Union Sajad Subhan Rather.
Meanwhile, while talking to the Free Press Kashmir, one of the students charged with sedition, Abdul Haseeb Mir said that the University is becoming subservient and is acting against its own students.
Recently, two Kashmiri students were suspended by the university for offering funeral prayers in absentia for scholar-turned- militant Mannan Wani. Seven others have been served show cause notices and two students have been slapped with sedition charges.
However, the students denied that they had gathered to offer funeral prayers for Wani.
PDP President and former Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti has asked the Government of India to intervene and revoke sedition cases slapped against the students of Aligarh Muslim University.
In a tweet, Mehbooba said that to punish the students for ‘remembering their former colleague who was a victim of relentless violence in Kashmir would a travesty.’ She added that pushing youth to the wall will be counter productive.
Earlier, Mehbooba Mufti, the former Chief Minister of the state said that Mannan’s death was ‘entirely our loss’.
On Tuesday, the JK Governor spoke to Union Minister for Human Resource Development, Prakash Javadekar seeking his intervention to ensure smooth studies of the Kashmiri students at the Aligarh Muslim University (AMU).