Over 100 Kashmiri students, including girls, have been turned out of their paying guest (PG) accommodations in Mullana village in Haryana's Ambala district, forcing them to seek refuge with the authorities of a private deemed university where they are studying.
The Kashmiri students of the Maharishi Markandeshwar (deemed to be university) in Mullana, around 75 km from here, are being accommodated in the institution's hostels, sources said.
With sentiments riding high against terrorists from Kashmir and Pakistan following the Pulwama terror attack, the Kashmiri students were ordered out of PG accommodations by respective landlords after the Mullana village sarpanch (headman) Naresh Kumar issued an ultimatum to PG owners to oust Kashmiri students.
With tension mounting in the village, the Haryana Police are keeping a close watch and have assured Kashmiri students about safety.
"We are talking to the Kashmiri students and assuring them. More force has been deployed in the village," said Ambala district police chief Aastha Modi.
The village sarpanch on Friday issued an ultimatum to PG owners to oust Kashmiri students from accommodations within 24 hours. The ultimatum was issued after residents of the village took out a march against the Pulwama terror attack.
Most of the Kashmiri students were asked to leave on Saturday. "The ultimatum came all of a sudden. We were asked by our landlords to vacate accommodation. We are scared," a second-year student from South Kashmir told IANS.
Some of the Kashmiri students have reportedly moved with friends in nearby places like Ambala, Chandigarh and Rajpura, sources said.
The village sarpanch justified the ultimatum to Kashmiri students. "After the Pulwama attack, some Kashmiri students posted comments on social media celebrating the deadly strike. We have to be cautious about such elements," Kumar said, adding the ultimatum was not for all Kashmiri students, but for three students who were behind the unwarranted posts.
Meanwhile, the district authorities claimed that the situation was under control. "Students have been shifted to the university hostel for safety. We have warned the village sarpanch," said Ambala Deputy Commissioner Sharandeep Kaur Brar.
Though the authorities have asked students to return to respective PG accommodations, the students have chosen to remain inside the campus for around four days.