CRPF men go berserk at Islamia College
Break Windows, Smash Cars After Protest Against Teacher’s Arrest
Srinagar, Dec 11: Following the arrest of a college teacher, Noor Muhammad Bhat, for allegedly setting a question paper with ‘anti-establishment’ text, students of Islamia College here staged a demonstration against the government decision on Saturday. The paramilitary CRPF deployed to deal with the situation allegedly went berserk and ransacked the college and broke window panes of more than 35 vehicles. Meanwhile court today sent the accused teacher to six days police remand.
The college teacher was arrested on Monday after some newspapers reported that students appearing in the English paper for BA, BSc and B Com Ist Year annual examination were asked to translate an Urdu passage to English, a paragraph portraying the killings of youngsters, curfews, strikes and alleged highhandedness of troops during the six month long unrest.
On Saturday as the examinations of B Com and BSc first year were over, groups of students protested against the arrest of college lecturer outside the college premises.
The students raised slogans in favour of detained teacher and demanded his release. They also raised pro-freedom and anti-India slogans.
Soon after, the CRPF troops deployed in the area swung into action and fired tear gas canisters and baton charged the students. In return, the students became furious and pelted stones.
“We were peacefully staging the demonstration for the teacher,” a student said. “He was put behind bars for speaking truth. Even the most dictatorial regimes never resorted to such tactics.”
The students said they were demonstrating peacefully before the CRPF started beating students.
However, they maintained the clashes took place for a very brief period of time.
On the other hand after dispersing the students by force, the college teachers alleged that CRPF personnel barged into the college and started ransacking whatever came their way.
A teacher of Islamia College, Dr Nazir, said CRPF men went on full scale raid of the college.
“There was nobody present in the college when CRPF forcibly entered into the college,” Nazir said. “Out of fear we closed the entrance gate. They hurled abusive languages. Then broke the windowpanes of college, canteen and turned upside down whatever came in their way. Later they broke window panes of vehicles belonging to faculty which were parked in the college.”
He said at least 35 vehicles were damaged.
“They were pushing batons through gaps in the entrance railings to intimidate us,” Nazir said. “Then we were trapped there for more than three hours before police came and rescued us.”
The lecturers said more than 2000 students of science and commerce appeared in the exams.
SSP Srinagar, Syed Ashiq Bukhari said the students protested because they had faced a tough question paper during their exam.
“They protested and pelted stones on a bunker outside the college,” Bukhari said. “The CRPF retaliated.”
Asked if police would register case against CRPF, he said, “We have sent SP to verify the facts.”
Late in the evening, violent protests against the arrest of the teacher were also witnessed in old city’s Habbakadal area.
Noor Muhammad Bhat, a lecturer in Gandhi Memorial College, was produced before City Judge Syed Adnan who sent him to six-day police custody. Bhat was arrested yesterday under the Unlawful Activities Act and some sections of the CRPC.
Lastupdate on : Sat, 11 Dec 2010 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sat, 11 Dec 2010 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sun, 12 Dec 2010 00:00:00 IST
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