Several students injured after mob attacks a group of Muslims for praying on the university premises in Gujarat state.

By Al Jazeera Staff

At least four foreign students have been injured after a Hindu far-right mob allegedly stormed a university hostel in India’s western Gujarat state and attacked the group of students for offering prayers during the holy month of Ramadan, local media has reported.

India’s Ministry of External Affairs on Sunday pledged to take “strict actions against the perpetrators”, as the local police in the home state of Prime Minister Narendra Modi said an investigation was under way in connection with the attack at the Gujarat University.

The students told local media that a small group had gathered on Saturday night inside the boys’ hostel premises for the Ramadan tarawih prayer as there is no mosque on the university campus based in Ahmedabad. Soon after, a mob armed with sticks and knives stormed the hostel, attacked them and vandalised their rooms, they said.

“A group of 15 students were offering prayers when three people came and started shouting ‘Jai Shri Ram’ [Hail lord Ram]. They objected to us praying here,” local media quoted a student as saying.

“After some time, about 250 people came and shouted ‘Jai Shri Ram’. They pelted stones and vandalised hostel properties.”

A student from Afghanistan told local NDTV network: “They attacked us inside the rooms too. They broke laptops, phones and damaged bikes,” adding that the AC and sound system were destroyed as well.

Videos posted on X showed ransacked student dorms and a mob destroying the students’ motorbikes with long tools.

“We cannot survive like this,” one African student said in his video filmed from the hostel. In the background, loud shouting and sounds of items being demolished, broken and smashed by the mob are heard.

“We came to India to study and now we’re being attacked just because it’s time for Ramadan and Muslims were praying. Now they’re breaking down the bikes, everything is being demolished down[stairs],” he said.

The Indian Express news website reported two of the students were severely injured and are recovering at a hospital after students from Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and several African countries were attacked.

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