J & K

Kashmiri scholar leaves BITS Pilani after objectionable messages, threat

May 09, 2017 05:28 AM
Threats written on Sofia's clothes

Jaipur: In a very ugly case of homegrown racism, a 27-year-old Kashmiri research scholar, Hashim Sofi, in BITS Pilani chose to give up his career and go back home because he was racially abused by his fellow students in the prestigious institute.

This is the second incident where a Kashmiri has been abused in Rajasthan. A few days ago, a group of Kashmiri students were termed as ‘terrorists’ and beaten up in a market in Chittorgarh. 

It has been learned that Hashim Sofi had allegedly received objectionable messages in hostel barely three weeks after joining the institute, the report said. Sofi, who hails from Bandipora district of Kashmir, had told the hostel’s chief warden that on Friday morning, he had found the door of his room and his clothes inked with threats and abuses, an official of the institute said, as per the report.

Notably, Sofi had joined as a Junior Research Fellow in pharmacy, science and engineering research board (SERB). Following the incident, BITS Pilani administration has ordered a probe. “The student had met the chief warden… Today, we learnt that the research scholar was not in his room and left without informing the project investigator and institute authorities.

 “The institute has taken serious note of the matter and has asked standing committee on student affairs to investigate the matter and submit a report swiftly,” media coordinator of the institute, Giridhar Kunkur said.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi yesterday had urged all Chief Ministers to take care of students from Jammu and Kashmir in their respective states, a remark that assumes significance in view of some recent untoward incidents against them. PM Modi’s advice at a meeting with Chief Ministers here came after Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti raised the issue, According to PTI report.

At the meeting of the NITI Aayog Governing Council, Modi “seconded” Mehbooba’s suggestion that states should take interest in the students from Jammu and Kashmir who are studying in other states. The Prime Minister “urged states to reach out to these students (of J&K) from time to time”, said a statement by the PMO quoting Modi’s concluding remarks.

According to PTI, PM Modi’s statement comes days after six Kashmiri students of Mewar University in Rajasthan were allegedly thrashed by some locals there. Two local youths were arrested later in connection the incident. The accused were not students.

Following the arrest, state Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje had tweeted, “Kashmiri students are our children. The Police have taken prompt action and apprehended the culprits.”

Also, in Meerut last week, a hoarding had been put up by a right wing activist, asking Kashmiris to leave Uttar Pradesh. He too has been arrested.

The Prime Minister also took note of the invitation extended by Mehbooba to various state governments to organise events in her state.

“The Prime Minister suggested that states could organize events there,” the statement said.

Later tonight, Modi tweeted, “Appreciable gesture by J&K CM @MehboobaMufti to invite other states to organise events there. Urged CMs to accept this invite from J&K CM.”


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