Srinagar: On a visit to the Valley, Rahul
Gandhi on Monday struck an emotional chord with Kashmir University
students, saying he understands the "pain" of Kashmiris as he
was a Kashmiri himself.
Addressing around 1,000 students at the University`s
convention centre, the 41-year-old AICC General Secretary said
he also understood the language of violence as his family had
been a victim of violence.
"I am a Kashmiri as a lot of you people must be aware.
So the pain and the suffering of this place is my suffering as
well," Gandhi said, evoking applause from the students who
had gathered for an interaction with him.
After his introduction by Kashmir University Vice
Chancellor Talat Ahmed, Gandhi gave his own introduction and
said his approach was to connect with the youth.
"When I was 14, I was sitting in class inattentive when
a lady walked to be and said there was a call. I received the
call and told that my grandmother (Indira Gandhi) had been
shot dead. Few years later my father (Rajiv Gandhi) was also
"People who have suffered because of violence can
understand the pain of violence," he said.
The students posed many questions about the level
of violence in the Valley to which Gandhi gave a patient
Students spoke about the lack of job facilities and
also virtual absence of multi-nationals in the state.
Gandhi said the MNCs had some minimum basic requirements
which required to be fulfilled but as far as other business
houses are concerned, there was a need for having a congenial
atmosphere for their functioning.
"I will send a delegation of young businessman. My
responsibility is to send them to you and your responsibility
is to convince them how they could set up their business in
After the interaction, a group of engineering students
said it was a "good experience" talking to Rahul.
"He listened to us. There was nothing like politics
involved in it, we talked about education and jobs," a student
Another group of students which included five boys and
three girls said they were happy after meeting Rahul.
"No politics was discussed. He asked me to come to Delhi
and meet him in person," another student said.
Rahul, who is on a two-day visit to Jammu and Kashmir,
reached the campus after addressing a public meeting at Kargil
district of Ladakh division.
Most of the students said Rahul spoke about jobs, sports
facilities, issuance of passports and corporate sector.
Rahul was asked why no FIRs were filed against those
responsible for the deaths during last year`s summer unrest to
which he answered "I cannot talk about politics".
No media persons were allowed inside the convocation hall
where the meeting took place.