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I'm not alien to pain, Rahul tells Kashmir students

Last updated on: September 26, 2011 21:56 IST

I'm not alien to pain, Rahul tells Kashmir students

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Mukhtar Ahmad in Srinagar

Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi on Monday had an hour-long interaction with the students of Kashmir University during which he faced questions on issues like unemployment and harassment of Kashmiris outside the state.

Rahul, who arrived in Srinagar on Monday on a two-day visit to the state, however, did not respond to the questions posed by the students and said that 'he would return to the Valley sometime later'.

He said 'pain and suffering was not something that he cannot understand'.

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Image: Rahul Gandhi leaves Kashmir University in Srinagar after interacting with students on Monday
Photographs: Umar Ganie
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'Pain and suffering is not something I cannot understand'

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"My grandmother was killed when I was just 14 and my father was killed when I was 21. Pain and suffering is not something I cannot understand," he said.

The media was kept at bay by the authorities and were not allowed to cover the interactive session.

Rahul's visit to the university was preceded by allegations by the hard-line separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani that his visit was to launch a membership drive for the Youth Congress.

The Kashmir University had denied the allegation. "The University authorities would not allow any membership drive by a political party at the campus," a university statement said.


Image: Rahul Gandhi visiting Hazratbal shrine in Srinagar on Monday
Photographs: Umar Ganie
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'I've come to learn how best I can help Kashmir'

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Rahul is reported to have told the gathering of students that he had not come to make a political speech. "I have come to learn and understand how best I can help people here."

The students had asked Rahul to persuade the multinational companies to make recruitments in Kashmir so that the Valley's mounting problem of unemployment is addressed.

He also paid obeisance at Kashmir's most revered shrine of Hazratbal later.


Image: Rahul Gandhi interacting with locals at the Hazratbal shrine in Srinagar on Monday
Photographs: Umar Ganie
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