Kashmiri Scholar Harassed, Quits BITS Pilani

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Pilani, (Rajasthan): A Kashmiri researcher, Hashim Sofi (27), left BITS Pilani for his hometown in Bandipora, Kashmir on Sunday after allegedly facing harassment.

Sofi, who was working as a research project staff at the institute in Rajasthan, also wrote about the episode on Facebook.

According to India Today, the victim reported to the chief warden of his hostel on April 20 that he had found offensive comments on two of his t-shirts left for drying in the balcony. The door to his room also had objectionable remarks. 

According to the scholarÂ’s report, the incident took place on the intervening night of April 20 and 21.

“The Chief Warden met and assured all assistance and help to the concerned project fellow. He made arrangements to shift him from the hostel to residential quarters. The Chief Warden got in touch with the Associate Dean, Students’ Welfare and they inquired the matter from the hostel Superintendent and the Warden, got in touch with the Chief Security Officer and called a meeting of all the people. They didn’t find any other such incident from any other research scholar or student from Jammu and Kashmir. Exactly what has happened is yet to be ascertained. The enquiry report of the Chief Warden was submitted to the Associate Dean, SWD,” the BITS Pilani report on the incident said.

The Pilani report also said that on Monday, April 23, Hashim Sofi was not to be found in his quarters and had left the institute premises without intimating either his Project Investigator or any of the concerned authorities. Sofi could not be contacted on phone, said the report.

On April 19, a group of Kashmiri students in Mewar University, in Chittorgarh district were allegedly thrashed. Kashmiri students at the university demanded security after the incident.

Union Home Minister, Rajnath Singh, conveyed his concern about the safety and security of Kashmiri students all across the country. Singh also requested the state governments to do the needful in order to ensure safety of students.

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