Tension prevails in NIT Srinagar campus; outstation students seek shifting out
Srinagar: Tension prevailed at NIT Srinagar with outstation students today making a slew of demands, including shifting the institute out of Kashmir and action against the policemen involved in lathicharge yesterday, as an HRD team rushed here from Delhi to resolve the crisis being witnessed since last six days.
The developments at the prestigious engineering institute also triggered politicking even as the state government assured that safety will be ensured for the students hailing from other states at the campus where CRPF has been deployed to instill a sense of security.
A day after lathicharge by local police on the agitating non-local students at the campus, the Union HRD Ministry rushed a three-member team — Sanjeev Sharma, Director (Technical Education) in the ministry, Deputy Director Finance Fazal Mehmood and Chairman of Board of Governors of NIT M J Zarabi — here this morning.
The team interacted with the outstation students who have been expressing a sense of insecurity at the campus.
“Our first demand is that the NIT be shifted from here. We want to go home first and we will go wherever you shift us,” the students told the HRD Ministry team at the campus.
The students said the police had taken away national flag from them during a clash on Friday last and demanded that it be returned to them.
The students, who had assembled in a hall inside the NIT campus, also demanded strict action against police personnel including Deputy Superintendent of Police who resorted to lathicharge on them yesterday.
“What J&K police has done, you have seen the videos. We want strict action be taken against them including the DySP Sajad. We also demand the DySP change his statement in which he has said that students hurled stones at police,” said a student, who was speaking on behalf of the rest.
They said some of the staff members of NIT Srinagar should resign so that “they do not play with anyone student’s career.”
“We are not going to take any names here but we will provide a list in writing. They have to resign,” the student leader said.
He also sought directions from the HRD ministry to allow the media inside the campus for interaction with the students.
In Surat, HRD Minister Smriti Irani said she had spoken to Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti who assured her that safety of all students will be ensured.
“My officers are in touch with the agitating students and their family members. One or two students said they wanted to go back home for which my ministry is making arrangements,” she said.
“HRD officers are present in the campus. We have interacted with around 800 students. We have asked that all students who are worried should tell us, so that we can assist them,” Irani said.