Protests Rock Kashmir University

SRINAGAR: Hundreds of students of Kashmir University held protest demonstrations for the second day running Monday against the arrest of two fellow students by the police during shooting of Hindi film ‘Haider’ at the campus on Sunday.

Reports said that hundreds of students from various departments this morning boycotted their classes and staged protests, against what they termed as police high handedness during the shooting of Bollywood director Vishal Bhardwaj’s upcoming film Haider at the campus on Sunday afternoon. Chanting slogans, the protesters alleged that the policemen arrested two students from Law and Linguistic departments when they resisted the move by the film crew to hoist a national tricolor in the Naseem Bagh campus and objected to the Bollywood actor Irfan Khan, who was spotted smoking at the campus. 

The protesters took out a march that passed through different department before reaching administrative block. The protesters later staged a peaceful sit-in outside the office of Vice Chancellor, Prof Talat Ahmed.

“We condemn the police highhandedness on our fellow students. Kashmir University is an academic institution. It’s not a military camp, where forces can come, puff cigarettes and harass students,” said Mohammad Asif.

 “The officials have turned university into a political camp. Every second day, politicians, police personnel visit the varsity to propagate Indianism. We want the University to remain as an academic institution despite the fact that we want freedom for Kashmir,” said another protesting student.

Chief Proctor, Kashmir University, Dr Naseer Iqbal said that the protests broke out on Sunday after students objected to the smoking by some crew members of the film unit. He said an employee and a student who were detained by cops during the protests, were released after the intervention of the officials.

“I got the two released from the police station in 5 minutes. Flag hoisting, or erection of bunkers in the campus is a lie. The problem started when students asked the crew members not to smoke in the University, which is a smoke free zone,” he added.

Meanwhile, Kashmir University Students Union (KUSU) said the Indian film industry’s repeated adventures in Kashmir are nothing but another facet of ‘occupation’.

“The dazzle of Indian film Industry will never conceal India’s war crimes in Kashmir nor whitewash them. 

KUSU said that it condemns the university administration and the VC Prof Talat Ahmad who has spoiled the academic atmosphere in varsity through his pro-government theatrics and more loyal than the king attitude. 

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