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Kher stopped at Srinagar airport, denied visit to NIT

Actor Anupam Kher was on Sunday stopped by Jammu and Kashmir Police at the airport here and not allowed to visit the National Institute of Technology (NIT), which recently witnessed clashes between local and outstation students.

“He (Kher) was stopped at the airport and not allowed to visit NIT,” a police official said.

He said Kher was asked to return to Delhi as there were apprehensions of law and order problems.

Kher reached the airport on Sunday morning and was scheduled to visit NIT to “give moral support to the students”.

“Landed in Srinagar.’HOME’ away from home. Will go to #NITSrinagar & meet the students & give them a warm hug & a special gift. :)” Kher tweeted.

“I have been told by J&K Police that I cannot enter Srinagar city at all. I have asked them to show me the orders. Still at the airport,” he wrote on Twitter.

He said he was not going to NIT to create problems but to meet the students.

“I was going there as a citizen to meet students and give them moral support...If they say this is a law and order situation, I will say millions of people go to university, it’s an open place, why should they stop me,” Kher said at the airport.

“I was not going there to create problems.I was just going there to give them a sense of warmth,” he said.

Trouble had broken out at the campus when groups of local and outstation students clashed following India’s defeat at the hands of West Indies in the semi-final match of T20 Cricket World Cup 

The Bollywood actor alleged that police did not even allow him to visit his ancestral house or Kheer Bhawani Temple in central Kashmir’s Ganderbal district.

“Asked J&K Police if I can visit my ancestral home or Kheer Bhawani temple.Even that is not allowed. Basically it is #AirportArrest,” Kher said.

Meanwhile, before his return to Delhi, Kher displayed the tricolour at the airport, saying it was his gift to the NIT students.

“Dear #NITSrinagar Students: Country loves & Salutes ur (your) Nationalism & Courage,” he wrote on Twitter.

“Keep it up.Work Hard & Good luck for your exams. #Blessings. Dear #NITSrinagar students: Your courage has been Loud & Clear. Now show victory with your exam results. I send you my love from d (the) airport,” he said.

He said, “Sometimes situations try their level best to make u (you) cynical & bitter. I wont let that happen. I’ll always want Hope & Optimism to triumph:).” 

Kher said he was returning with a heavy heart but was hopeful that things will become better.

“As I return from Srinagar airport, my heart is heavy but I have hope that things will change & become better. I remain an #EternalOptimist,” he said.

The Bollywood actor also thanked the state police and airport staff for their warmth and hospitality.

“Thank you Srinagar airport staff, J&K Police & other authorities for your warmth & hospitality while I was at d airport. I will be back. :),” he tweeted.

Meanwhile, around 150 youth who were on their way to Srinagar to express solidarity with the non-local students at the National Institute of Technology (NIT) were detained at Lakhanpur and not allowed to enter Jammu and Kashmir.

“Around 150 youth from Delhi, Punjab and Harayana who were on their way to Srinagar to join the NIT protest were not allowed to enter Jammu and Kashmir and were detained at Lakhanpur late last night from where they were sent back,” a senior police officer said.

“Fearing the law and order problem, around 150 youth who tried to enter Jammu and Kashmir on a bus and a Tata Sumo were not allowed to enter the state and were sent back,” the officer said.

Led by Tejinder Pal Singh Bagga of Bhagat Singh Kranti Dal the youth returned to New Delhi from Lakhanpur after police did not allow them to proceed towards the state.

The youth were on their way to Srinagar for unfurling national tri colour at NIT to express their solidarity with non-local students there.

The youth comprising students of IT, engineering, architect and other courses had begun their journey under the banner of newly formed “Group of Citizens” from Delhi s Gurdwara Rakabgunj on Saturday.
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