Zee Media Bureau/Ritesh K Srivastava
New Delhi: Sensing an opportunity to further push his anti-India agenda, Hafiz Saeed, the founder of the Pakistan-based terror outfit Jamaat-ud-Dawah (JuD), has offered scholarships to the 67 Kashmiri students who were suspended from the Swami Vivekanand Subharti University for celebrating Pakistan`s victory over India in Sunday`s Asia Cup match.
It was reported on Friday that the JuD chief has offered them scholarships to study anywhere in the world while expressing full sympathy towards the suspended Kashmiri students.
"We would like to offer scholarships for these expelled students wherever in the world they want to study, Pakistani nation is proud of them," Saeed had tweeted.
The JuD followed it up with: "Indian mindset against Kashmiris is exposed yet again by this sad incident, while immense love for Pakistan by Kashmiris is very clear too."
"Expulsion of Kashmiri students from a university & charges of sedition for supporting Pakistan in cricket explains how `democratic` India is," he said, while describing the act of the students as a significant development.
The Pakistan Foreign Office too sought to further fan the controversy after its spokesperson Tasneem Aslam said, "We saw Indian media reports that there were all-night celebrations and there were also reports that 67 Kashmiri students were expelled."
Admitting that she does not have any way of corroborating that information, Aslam said, "If these Kashmiri students want to come and pursue their studies in Pakistan, our hearts and academic institutions are open to them."
When she was informed that sedition charges were slapped against them, Aslam said, "For cheering a team in a cricket match? If this is sedition, it is very unfortunate."
Following criticism from various quarters and mainly due to the intervention of J&K Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, the Uttar Pradesh Government on Thursday dropped the sedition charges against the all Kashmiri students for allegedly cheering the Pakistani cricket team`s win against India.
Swami Vivekananda Subharti University in Meerut expelled 67 Kashmiri students from the hostel after they had allegedly supported Pakistan cricket team against India in the Asia Cup match between the two sides and shouted slogans "Pakistan zindabad" on Sunday last weekend.
The students were booked under section 124 A (sedition), 153 A (promoting enmity between different groups) and 427 (mischief) of IPC following a complaint by University Chancellor PK Garg.
Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah today said that slapping of sedition charges was "unacceptably harsh punishment", adding that the students did not commit any illegal act.
After the withdrawal of the charges, Abdullah wrote on the micro-blogging site Twitter, "Very glad that the UP government dropped sedition charges against the students," adding that he is thankful to UP Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav for his intervention.