Srinagar: Even though scores of students on Wednesday staged a demonstration here demanding the release of a 16-year-old school girl who is at the centre of Handwara molestation row, her classmates are not too keen on welcoming her back.
Schools reopened in Handwara on Thursday.
Trouble had erupted in the town in north Kashmir, 70 km north of Srinagar, after rumours last Tuesday that a school girl had been molested by a soldier while she was using a public lavatory, near a security picket in a town square of Handwara.
Five people were killed in firing by security forces in the widespread violence that engulfed Handwara and adjacent areas in Kupwara district after the alleged molestation incident.
The girl later deposed before the chief judicial magistrate (CJM) of Handwara that she had not been molested by anybody and that some local youth were responsible for accusing her and spreading the molestation rumour in the town.
Talking to news channel NDTV, classmates said that the school girl "suppressed reality, she should have spoken the truth". Most told the channel that they would not mingle with her if she returns.
The principal of the teen's school, however, said: "We will support her fully we would like her to continue her studies in this institution despite all the odds.”
The girl is in preventive custody with her father and aunt.