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Mehbooba Writes Letter to PM Modi, Flays Harassment of Students for Cheering Pakistani Cricket Team

People’s Democratic Party chief regretted the government response to book youngsters under the anti-terror laws like UAPA for choosing to cheer for Pakistan in Sunday’s T-20 game.

She regretted that the people of Kashmir were subjected to incessant lockdowns, internet gag and restriction of the movement led to booking youngsters under the UAPA for “simply choosing to cheer the winning side”.

“Our brightest young people pursuing professional courses like MBBS have been targeted and slapped with anti-terror laws, ” she said, in a letter written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Mehbooba tweeted the letter on the social media site and with media.

Read | Blacklist Colleges That Harass, Humiliate Kashmiri Student, Says Student Body

“While within Kashmir youth are no strangers to the state excesses, three students in Agra too have been arrested and charged with sedition for the same reasons. This despite the college’s own admission that they didn’t engage in any activity that might be construed as anti-national, ” she said.

Referring to the all-party meeting in Delhi with PM, she said it took long ago when you presided over an all-party meeting in Delhi where you expressed your intention to remove “dill ke doori “between Delhi and J&K.

“In my capacity as the President of PDP I suggested a few Confidence-building measures that would have provided a sense of relief & breathing space to the people of J&K. We had been waiting for the rollout of a policy to address the hearts and minds of people especially youth.”

Instead, she said “spree of raids, arrests, killings continue unabated the level of repression and state intolerance has touched a new low. “

Taking about the recent visit by union home minister Amit Shah, she said there were expectations that his visit to J&k would have led to a meaningful reach out. Especially after his statement about engaging with the youth here. Instead what followed was “shocking” and “worrying”.

Read | Kin of Kashmiri Students Arrested in UP for ‘Cheering Pak’s Cricket Win over India’ Ask Govt to Forgive Them

The former JK chief minister said patriotism and a sense of loyalty have to be cultivated with compassion and can’t be forced by wielding the baton or by the barrel of a gun. ‘Such punitive actions laced with contempt will only further the sense of mistrust & alienation between the younger generation & rest of the country.”

“Political parties & their fortunes will wax & wane over the course of time. But what matters most is the future generation that will have to carry the burdens of the past yet strive to fulfil the expectations of a better tomorrow. Especially when it comes to a state like J&K steeped in its history of repeated betrayals & past wounds.” She said

She said wisdom deems it prudent for this government to engage with them, understand their aspirations & goals.

“I request you (PM) to intervene so that the future of these young bright minds is not destroyed, ” she wrote in the letter.

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