Kashmiris, students of two medical colleges in the Indian Illegally Occupied Kashmir & Jammu region have cases booked on them under terror law for just cheering on Pakistan victory against India in the ICC T20 World Cup.
Pakistan destroyed India with a 10-wicket victory in the ICC T20 World Cup match held in UAE on Sunday night. India’s defeat triggered attacks against Kashmiri students in western Punjab state and a Muslim member of the Indian team was abused by Indians online and called a traitor.
Following Sunday’s match, there were similar celebrations in the disputed region over Pakistan’s first-ever win against India in a cricket World Cup.
Among those cheering were students from the region’s top medical colleges: the Government Medical College and the Sher-i-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences, both situated in the main city of Srinagar. Videos of their celebration outside their residential hostels went viral on social media.
2 cases under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) have been filed against an unknown number of students for causing “insult to the national sentiment during the cricket match”.
No student has been named in the First Information Report (FIR) filed by the police and no arrests have been made so far.
But the move has triggered outrage in the region since it comes a day after more than a dozen Kashmiri students were assaulted by a mob in at least two colleges in Punjab for celebrating Pakistan’s victory against India.
The students alleged they were watching the match in their rooms when people carrying sticks attacked them, seriously wounding some.
Kashmiris was booked under terror law with UAPA cases following a barrage of online trolling, with some social media users saying the students should be “sent to Pakistan” and denied government jobs in future.
A Kashmiri human rights lawyer, who did not want to be named, told Al Jazeera that shouting “Pakistan zindabad” (Long live Pakistan) after a cricket win is not legally wrong.
“The court will ultimately throw out the case against these students, but under UAPA, it is virtually impossible to secure bail,” he told Al Jazeera.
“It is very immature, insensitive and harsh to impose a stringent anti-terror law on students for a mere celebration, howsoever enthusiastic they may have been.”