Student Protests Continue, Govt Shuts Colleges For 2 More Days


Srinagar: Colleges across Kashmir Valley will remain shut for two more days from Thursday as the administration extended the two-day shutdown of these educational institutions in the wake of continuing student protests.

“According to the Divisional Commissioner Kashmir, teaching work in all colleges of Kashmir division shall remain suspended on April 20 and 21 as a precautionary measure,” an official spokesman said.

These educational institutions remained closed on Wednesday for the second consecutive day on the orders of the Divisional Administration in view of the widespread student protests that began on Monday.

The universities, colleges and classes 11th and 12th were closed on Tuesday following orders to this effect issued by Divisional Commissioner Kashmir Baseer Khan.

Students of many of these institutions had on Monday staged protests against the Saturday’s armed police crackdown on Government Degree College Pulwama in which over 50 students were injured.

Reports from North Kashmir said that clashes erupted after police used force to disperse students who staged protests in Palhallan and Delina areas on the busy Srinagar-Baramulla highway on Wednesday.

Reports and witnesses said that students of the Delina Higher Secondary School took out a protest march.

Police swung into action and stopped the protesting students who tried to march on the highway, triggering clashes.

In a separate incident, the students of Palhallan Higher Secondary School also staged protests and tried to block the highway. Police used force to disperse the protesting students, triggering clashes.

While the students pelted stones, the police responded by bursting teargas shells.

Scores of students also staged protests in Ajas area of north Kashmir’s Bandipora district.

Witnesses said that the students of the Higher Secondary School and several middle schools in Ajas area took to streets and blocked the Bandipora-Srinagar road, thereby hampering traffic movement. The protesting students were shouting pro-freedom and anti-India slogans.

The students of Higher Secondary School Nadihal also staged a demonstration.

Clashes erupted in Bomai Sopore town  after a large number of students from Government Higher Secondary School Bomai took out a procession chanting pro-freedom slogans. To disperse the protesting students, Government forces used tear-smoke shells. The clashes continued for hours.

In Srinagar students from Government College for Women, Nawakadal staged a protest. The protesting students denounced the use of force on students and demanded action against CRPF men responsible for attacking a female student of their college.

In Kangan students of Government Higher Secondary School also took out protest rally today.

Demanding action against the accused, the students staged a sit-in at the main Kangan chowk.

Over 60 students, including girls, were injured when security forces burst teargas shells at Degree College Pulwama on April 16 to disperse demonstrators protesting against setting up of a checkpoint outside the college gates.

The incident led to massive protests by students in different colleges, universities and higher secondary schools across Kashmir valley on Monday, when several students were injured in the clashes with security forces.

In view of the students protests, the authorities suspended classes in all universities, colleges and higher secondary schools in the valley, where mobile internet remained suspended for the fifth day today while the speed of broadband has also been reduced.

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