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  Metros   Delhi  24 Feb 2017  DU tense as ABVP, AISA members protest

DU tense as ABVP, AISA members protest

Published : Feb 24, 2017, 6:02 am IST
Updated : Feb 24, 2017, 6:46 am IST

Left-backed students demand FIR against saffron brigade over assault; Crime branch given probe.

 AISA members and JNU students protest outside Police HQ in New Delhi.
  AISA members and JNU students protest outside Police HQ in New Delhi.

New Delhi: A day after violent clashes broke outside Ramjas College, hundreds of students from DU and JNU jointly staged a protest outside the Delhi police headquarters near ITO seeking action against the ABVP members and police on Thursday. The Delhi police has transferred the probe of Ramjas College incident to the crime branch with immediate effect.

Also, DU teacher Prasanta Chakravarty, who was roughed up during the North Campus clash, on Thursday alleged the involvement of outsiders in the violence. Prof. Chakravarty said the people who assaulted him during the clashes on Thursday appeared to be “some kind of mercenaries” and not students.

While raising slogans of “ABVP se azaadi” and “Delhi police sharam karo,” All-India Student Association (AISA) from DU and JNU demanded that police register an FIR against the ABVP members, who allegedly attacked the students. Even teachers from DUTA participated in the protest. They also alleged the police personnel of not taking action against the ABVP members.

The protest started at 11 am at the PHQ main gate. The Delhi police had already made arrangements outside the PHQ to confine the protesters inside barricades amid deployment of heavy police personnel.

To address the protesting students, special commissioner of police (law and order) S.B.K. Singh came face to face with them. He faced a volley of tough questions from the protesting students, who alleged that the local police in North Delhi was “hand-in-glove” with members of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) and not registering FIR against ABVP members.

At many instances during questions put up by students, the police was on the backfoot. “I did not order it. I can’t tell you the name of the person who did,” said Mr Singh when he was asked why the police lathicharged students who were holding a peaceful protest at the Maurice Nagar police station.

To ensure impartial probe, Mr Singh said, “We have transferred the case to the crime branch. All complainants can either submit or mail their statement to the investigating officer. A strict action will be taken in the case.”

A case under Sections 147 (rioting), 183 (taking of property by the lawful authority of a public servant), 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty), 332 (voluntarily causing hurt to deter public servant from his duty), 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), and 149 (unlawful assembly) of the Indian Penal Code has been registered at the Maurice Nagar police station.

Over 200 police officials, including women cops, were deployed outside the PHQ, who barricaded the area along with water cannon.

“We are here to protest because the Maurice Nagar police is partial and favours ABVP. We now demand that the police should file separate FIR of all the victims who were beaten up not only by the ABVP but also by the cops present there,” said one of the protesting DU students.

The protest also saw JNU student Umar Khalid, who missed the protests that took place during the last two days, addressing the protesters. “If I would have spoken at Ramjas College, then only a few would have heard me. But because of the furore, now the whole nation is hearing me. Delhi police has not been able to file a charge sheet against me and they say I am an anti-national and I have links with terrorist groups,” he said.

He also took a dig at PM Narendra Modi’s remark at a rally in Fatehpur and alleged that BJP is planning to make UP a “shamshaan”, just like he is making JNU and North campus a “shamshaan”.

Meanwhile, classes remained suspended at Ramjas since morning even as the authorities claimed it was due to “administrative reasons” and not because of the tense situation.

STGB Khalsa College too said that they had to cancel a street play competition after repeated threats from DUSU (Delhi University Students Union). “They objected because some of the plays on the competition were shedding a critical light on the discourse of this exclusivist hypernationalism,” said Saikat Ghosh, the staff advisor of the college theatre society.

Even Congress’ student wing, NSUI, led a peace march from Arts faculty, North Campus, to Maurice Nagar police station while chanting “Raghupati Raghav Raj Ram.”

While condemning the violent action by ABVP, NSUI president Amrita Dhawan said, “We haven’t called for a protest. We believe in non-violence and stand for freedom of speech and expression. We request everyone to not politicise the matter.”

Following the march by NSUI, around 50 ABVP members also gathered outside the Arts faculty and warned that “any repeat of last year’s JNU-like events” will not be tolerated in the university.

“They are anti-nationals. They disrespect the tricolour and Bharat Mata and engage in such kind of activities. We will not allow any repeat of JNU-like events in DU,” DUSU president Amit Tanwar said.

Reacting to the incident that took place on Wednesday, DU vice chancellor Yogesh Tyagi urged the students not to resort to violence. “Violence won’t lead to anything positive, neither offer any solution. People and students should not lose their cool. They should maintain peace on the campus. The proctor office will look into the matter,” he said.

Tags: ramjas college, abvp, jnu
Location: India, Delhi, New Delhi