Many face police action for celebrating Pakistan's win against India
Pakistan beat India by 10 wickets in a T20 match on Sunday, breaking a decades-old winning streak for India. Though there was dejection and disappointment among crores of Indians, unexpected celebrations erupted in parts of the country including Jammu and Kashmir. Many of those involved now face police action with some facing the stringent anti-terror law. Here's more on this.
Why does this story matter?
Students booked under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, which is usually invoked in terrorism cases, may be looking at years in jail along with fines. Notably, Sunday's match had coincided with Union Home Minister Amit Shah's visit to Kashmir, the first since the abrogation of J&K's special status in 2019. The erstwhile state of J&K was bifurcated two years ago.
J&K students face UAPA
On Monday, the Srinagar Police filed FIRs under sections of the UAPA against women hostel students of Government Medical College (GMC) and students at Sher-i-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences (SKIMS). Videos of students celebrating Pakistan's win had gone viral. Meanwhile, in Samba, police detained several people for allegedly raising pro-Pakistan slogans. More people may be called for questioning, officials said.
Kashmiri students booked in Agra
In Agra, three students of the Raja Balwant Singh (RBS) Engineering Technical College shared WhatsApp messages in support of the Pakistan team. The trio, studying under the Prime Minister's Special Scholarship Scheme for J&K students, later apologized for the messages. They have since been rusticated from the college and are facing a police case involving sections of the IPC and the IT Act.
Rajasthan teacher sacked
Separately, a teacher at a private school in Rajasthan's Udaipur shared a photo of Pakistani players and wrote "We won" on her WhatsApp status. After the status went viral, she apologized saying she did not mean to hurt anyone's sentiments. The school has sacked her while the police has booked her under IPC Section 153-B (imputations, assertions prejudicial to national-integration).
What did the teacher say?
"We were watching the match and had divided both teams at home. And we were supporting our teams. This, in any way, does not mean that I am supporting Pakistan...I am an Indian, I love India," Nafisa Attari, the teacher, said in her apology.
Kashmiri students allegedly attacked in Punjab
Earlier, violence against Kashmiri students was reported from Punjab after the match. Students said they were assaulted and their rooms ransacked after the T20 on Sunday. Sangrur Senior Superintendent of Police Swapan Sharma later said the matter was resolved. "Both sides have offered their apologies in front of the police and college authorities today (Monday) morning," he said.
Politicians react to police action
There are contrasting reactions to the police action. J&K BJP chief Ravinder Raina said, "Anyone who poses a threat to the territorial integrity and sovereignty of our motherland will be bulldozed and crushed." Peoples Conference's Sajad Lone, on the other hand, said, "You should have the courage and the belief to wean them back...Punitive actions won't help. Have not helped in the past either."