Days after a hate campaign was launched against Kashmiri students staying in various parts of the country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday condemned it.
Addressing a rally in Rajasthan's Tonk, PM Modi said the country was fighting against terrorism.
"We are fighting for Kashmir, not against Kashmiris," he said evoking a round of applause from people who attended the rally.
After Pulwama attack, Kashmiri students were targeted across country
After last week's dastardly Pulwama attack, Kashmiri students were ill-treated by goons. Reports of students being harassed and manhandled surfaced and everyone condemned it unanimously.
Some students were reportedly forced to seek refuge at their well-wishers' houses while others returned to their home state.
In Maharashtra, a mob asked Kashmiri students if their "relatives were terrorists" and whether they "attacked security forces".
On Friday, Supreme Court directed states to take necessary steps
Hearing a plea concerning the assault of students, the Supreme Court on Friday asked states and union territories to ensure Kashmiris are protected.
The bench, headed by CJI Ranjan Gogoi and including Justices LN Rao and Sanjiv Khanna, asked secretaries and DGPs to prevent any attack on students.
The court also directed states to inform what action was taken against perpetrators.
Kashmiri students shouldn't have been attacked: PM Modi
However, the absence of any stern statement from the Centre miffed many and PM Modi's words could perhaps address their concerns.
"In last few days, whatever happened with Kashmiri students is not the issue. It shouldn't have happened in the first place," said PM Modi.
Former J&K Chief Minister Omar Abdullah welcomed PM Modi's statement. He hoped the attacks would stop now.
Watch: PM Modi sends message to perpetrators
#WATCH PM Modi in Tonk, Rajasthan says "Pichhle dino kahan kya hua, ghatna chhoti thi ki badi thi, Kashmiri baccho ke saath Hindustan ke kisi kone mein kya hua kya nahi hua, mudda yeh nahi hai. Iss desh mein aisa hona nahi chahiye." pic.twitter.com/MUC65khffu
PM Modi also congratulated the security forces for eliminating those responsible for the Pulwama attack within 100 hours.
He reiterated his thoughts on the attack by saying this time no one would be spared.
Sending a strong message to his Pakistani counterpart Imran Khan, PM Modi said now was the time for him to walk the talk.
Khan told me he was son of Pathan: PM Modi
PM Modi in Rajasthan:When Pak got a new PM, I had congratulated him (Imran Khan).I had told him that we together should fight against povertyilliteracy.He had said to me that he was son of a Pathanwill stand by his words. Today, it is time to test if he will stand by his words. pic.twitter.com/obnYSYyLaY