A day after two Kashmiri students were attacked in Mahendergarh, Haryana, the father of one of them has alleged that his son was attacked for wearing a skullcap.
The students, Amjad and Aftab, of Central University of Haryana were allegedly beaten up by a group of around 10-15 men and suffered several bruises on the faces, arms and legs.
Students of the university said that the attack was completely unprovoked and the two were targeted only for their Kashmiri identity.
“There is no protection. My son was returning after the Friday prayers when a few bike borne men beat him up for wearing a skullcap,” said Aftab’s father Adbul Qayoom.
Qayoom urged the Jammu and Kashmir government to take required action.
On Saturday, the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly witnessed noisy scenes over the unfortunate incident with opposition members staging a walkout during the zero hour.
The state government assured the House that the matter has been taken up with Haryana and three persons have been arrested in the case.
Worried over the safety of his son, Aftab, Qayoom sought protection for his ward and at the same time advised him to get rid of his beard.
“He is a religious boy, he can’t stop offering namaaz, but I have asked him to shave off his beard,” said Qayoom.
BS Sandhu, Director General of Police, Haryana, was quoted by a Srinagar based news agency – GNS – saying: “We have arrested three youth among six identified.
The agency quoting Inspector Ramesh Kumar, SHO, Mahendergarh, said the names of arrested were Arvind, Suresh, Satveer. Some who are still at large were Pankaj, Ram Niyas and Yogesh.
“We have constituted a SIT headed by IGP Dr SC Roy and procured a clip which will help us identify all those responsible,” Sandhu told the news agency.
Qayoom, meanwhile, stressed that every university has students from J&K, and it won’t work if students are viewed as from this religion or that. He said students from other states also study in J&K.
Last night Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti reacting to a News18 tweet and picture of the injured boy had asked JKDGP to take up the issue with Rajasthan counterpart.
Mehbooba tweeted to Haryana chief minister ML Khatter urging him to take action against the culprits. In the morning Khatter tweeted back saying police have started investigation and lodged an FIR.
On Saturday, the NC and Congress MLAs walked out of state Assembly protesting the beating of the students.
Despite the helplines set up by state and central governments, reports of profiling of the Kashmiris continue to pour across the country.