Candlelight vigil in Ahmedabad in support of Kashmiris

Candlelight protest in Ahmedabad in solidarity with people of Kashmir DH Photo| Satish Jha

Professors, students, advocates and activists on Thursday assembled outside Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad to express their solidarity with people of Jammu and Kashmir who have been facing clampdown on communication for more than two months in wake of the removal of Article 370 as well as statehood by the Union government. 

The group of people holding placards in support of Kashmir also held a candlelight vigil amidst police scrutiny who were trying to find out who all came to participate. For two hours, over 200 people that included several professors and students of reputed institutes including IIM-A, CEPT, NID, among others stood in silence demanding peace in the valley where communication hasn't been restored fully. 

"We don't know what exactly is happening thereafter removal of Article 370 and statehood. Only a few national and international media have highlighted the plight of the citizens. These changes have been brought in a complete inhuman manner," said professor Navdeep Mathur who teaches public policy at IIM-A.

He further added, "This event is for all sorts of communities there. We are not doing any distinction here. Many of them have migrated, many lost their livelihood. It is about the way the whole issue has been dealt with. People have simply lost their rights to communicate. We are concerned as there is no medicine for 75 days, no schooling. Is it that easy for the state to rob children of schooling. It has been treated as a piece of real estate."

Dev Desai from NGO Anhad said that the purpose of this event was to talk about Kashmiris and their suffering and to highlight that "they are being treated in a most inhuman manner." Among the participants was Nirjhari Sinha, chairperson of NGO Jan Sangharsh Manch, who said, "It's been more than 70 days since Kashmir is locked down. It is against democratic values. The political leaders and activists are all behind bars. We came out in support of the ordinary people who have lost their voice."

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