IOK students stranded as India seals Bangladesh border

Dhaka, March 25 (KMS): A group of 75 medical students from occupied Kashmir was stranded at the Benapole border crossing of Bangladesh as India shut all land crossings with neighbouring countries.
According to Kashmir Media Service, the students were returning home from medical colleges in Mymensingh and Dhaka and were scheduled to reach Kolkata to board afternoon Kolkata-Srinagar flights, which they missed as they remained stranded at Benapole in Bangladesh’s Jessore district.
“We journeyed for 10 hours in buses to reach the Benapole-Petrapole crossing and we learnt of the closure of the border check-posts on the way,” said a fourth year student, explaining that the medical colleges in Bangladesh had asked the students to vacate hostels in view of the COVID-19 crisis.
“We were assured by authorities that they would let us enter India but now we are being denied,” the student, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said.
The Kashmiri medical students said that they required urgent help after New Delhi announced the total transport halt beginning from the midnight of Tuesday. Like India’s decision to suspend rail and air services, Bangladesh too suspended train services from Tuesday evening.
In view of the unprecedented suspension of air, road transport and railways in both India and Bangladesh, the students urged for prompt action from the Indian authorities to help them reach Srinagar.
Meanwhile, at least 45 students from various parts of occupied Kashmir are facing travel misery in Karnataka as the Indian authorities announced suspension of all domestic air traffic amid growing scare of coronavirus. A group of students told Srinagar-based media persons over phone that they are unlikely to make home even as their air tickets were confirmed for March 27.
The students said that the airport authorities were refusing to reschedule their flight dates as well as cancellation of tickets.
Saika, an IT student, said, “Where can we go at this point of time. We are in fear, disturbed, mentally ill here since last couple of weeks after rapid growth of COVID-19.” The suspension of air traffic, she said, has turned to be “devastating and no one is listening our sufferings.”
Nazir, a student from Kupwara district, said, “We don’t have many options left. Railways and bus transport services have been already suspended by authorities and now we lost the only hope of reaching our home where our parents are waiting.”

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One comment

  1. Both Government / authorities need rapid response to dissolve the issue and save the lives.

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