AMBALA: Mullana village on Friday openly issued an video ultimatum to paying guest (PG) owners in the village to oust the studying in Maharishi Markandeshwar University (MMU), Mullana within 24 hours.
In protest against the Pulwama terrorist attack, the Mullana villagers on Friday held a march in the village when the ultimatum was issued warning the PG owners of facing villagers’ anger if they do not expel the Kashmiri students.
Some of the Kashmiri students staying as PG in village Mullana told TOI that following the ultimatum the PG owners started asking them to vacant the rooms in the evening as a result of which they were forced to leave the place.
As per the viral video, the PG owners were actually asked to expel the Kashmiri students.
Presently, the students have been shifted to MMU hostel for four days due to security and safety reasons.
Students in fear
A female Kashmiri student of MMU with anonymity told TOI, “I live in university hostel while my brother lived as paying guest in and in the evening on Friday his landlord asked him to leave after the villagers issued the ultimatum of 24 hours. The university is asking for Rs 6,000 to stay for one month in the hostel without food.”
Another first-year Kashmiri student told TOI, “On Friday, the Mullana Sarpanch along with villagers issued an ultimatum to leave the village. We left the village in fear and went to university hostel which is demanding Rs 30,000 per semester for accommodation only accept food. I am going to my relatives’ house in Chandigarh and would return after normalcy.”
A third-year Kashmiri student said, “We were living as paying guest in Mullana and our landlord in the night asked us to vacant the rooms. The police came in for our protection and they have taken us to the university hostel. But we are not feeling safe here; I would be heading back to my village in Shopian.”
Mullana Sarpanch Naresh Kumar, when ed over the phone, said, “Earlier during the Uri attack, some of the students from the MMU had posted celebrating posts on the Facebook about the attack. For this time again, some of the Kashmiri students have posted celebrating posts and comments on Facebook about the Pulwama attack. We did not mean it for all the Kashmiri students, but for three of the identified ones who would not be allowed to stay in our village as we feel a threat from them. The university should take responsibility for them and we would be giving a complaint against them to the police.”
SP told TOI, “On Friday, somebody has made a video of the announcement in village Mullana which went viral on social media. It could be because of anger that the villagers have given such ultimatum, we have already increased the deployment of police in the area and any such activity would not be allowed. There are nearly 60 students living outside in Mullana, we have talked to the students, and the management of the institute as well. No such practice of victimising Kashmiri students would be allowed here. If the Sarpanch would say any such things we would pull him up.”
Ambala deputy commissioner (DC) Sharandeep Kaur Brar said, “The problem has been sorted, as of now, the students have been shifted to university hostel for security and safety reasons. No such policing would be allowed by the villagers and if anything comes to fore action as per law would be taken. We have strictly warned the village Sarpanch and keeping a vigilant eye on the area.”
Barara Sub-Divisional Magistrate, Girish Chawla told TOI, “Sarpanch Naresh has apologised for the matter in front of the university officials, Kashmiri students, and DSP Barara. He has also given assurance that no such harassment would be done to the Kashmiri students and they would be allowed to live freely in the village area. We have deployed 60 commandos for the security reasons and asked the students to move back to their PGs. But the students demanded to stay in the hostel for the next four days.”