More Kashmiris return home: Will go back once situation improves

Every person in Kashmir is not holding a gun, said the father of a student. “These students have only books in their hands and not guns.”

Students returning home in wake of the protests against Kashmiris after the Pulwama attack said they will return to their institutions once the situation becomes normal. Forty students studying in Jaipur and nearly 100 studying in Chandigarh reached Jammu on Thursday on way to their homes, PDP Rajya Sabha MP Fayaz Ahmed Mir said.

“It involves our career,” said a student. “All our belongings are still in our rooms there. We have brought only our academic documents,” she pointed out, adding, “We will return after staying at home for 10-15 days as the situation will ease out in the meantime.”

Other than “a few Bajrang Dal activists raising slogans”, local people were good to them, another student said. “A number of us wanted to stay, but hostel wardens and those who rented out rooms to us were worried about our safety. They all advised us to go home till the situation normalised,” she added.

Many students pointed out that there internal exams were due next month. A student, who has been studying at Dehradun for the past two years, said she never felt scared there earlier.  “Out of concern for our safety, they (landlords) started advising us to stay indoors. The police also asked us not to venture out of our rooms and said they will get whatever we needed from the market,” she added. “As our parents were worried, we decided to return home for some days. It will also save us from the stress we would be in if we stayed there,” another student said.

Thousands of students from Kashmir study in Dehradun and other parts of the country. A number of them have taken admissions under the Prime Minister’s scholarship scheme for students from Jammu and Kashmir, while many are studying there at their own expense.

Since the outbreak of militancy in Kashmir, Dehradun has been a favourite destination for Kashmiris to study as it is a peaceful area. “I intend to do my postgraduation there. We cannot compromise with our future because of a few slogan-raising miscreants on the roads,” said a student.

Every person in Kashmir is not holding a gun, said the father of a student. “These students have only books in their hands and not guns,” he added.

The government shall take steps to inculcate a sense of security among students and their parents back home, said Mir. Though the Home Ministry has issued an advisory in the matter, students and their parents will feel a “sense of confidence if Prime Minister Narendra Modi breaks his silence on the matter”, he added.

Another PDP leader Waheed Parra, who accompanied about 160 students from Dehradun, attributed the tense situation there to “a vicious, organised campaign by some rabid groups”.

Source: The Indian Express