As JNU simmers over attack on campus, student protests spread across country

In the Capital, at least 500 students and alumni from universities in Delhi protested outside the old Delhi Police headquarters at ITO on Sunday night after the JNU attacks.

Thousands across the country registered their protest after a masked mob attacked students and teachers and vandalised hostels in New Delhi’s Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) on Sunday.

Youngsters, mostly students from different colleges in Mumbai, assembled on the pavement across the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel near the Gateway of India to condemn the violence in JNU.

Former JNU student Umar Khalid was part of the group, which also held a candlelight vigil to show solidarity with JNU students. A student said it was an “impromptu assembly at a short notice”.

In the Capital, at least 500 students and alumni from universities in Delhi protested outside the old Delhi Police headquarters at ITO on Sunday night after the JNU attacks.

Protesters, largely students and teachers from Jamia Millia Islamia, JNU and Delhi University, claimed the police did not act promptly in stopping the attacks.

They also alleged that police in plainclothes also assaulted students inside the JNU campus and demanded immediate registration of a first information report, or FIR, into the incident. They also shouted slogans against the police and Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA).

“Police and administration are acting on the orders of the government. Civilians, including ABVP students, had also gathered outside JNU. We want the police commissioner to come and assure us of an FIR. No one apart from JNU students has been injured,” Bhupinder Chaudhry, an associate professor of history at Delhi University, said.

Students of the Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) also took out a candlelight march on Sunday to protest the violence at JNU.

They demanded the masked mob, armed with sticks and stones, which attacked JNU students and vandalised property must be arrested. They held the march inside the campus and ended at its Bab-e-Syed gate.

“Our protest was peaceful. ABVP men attacked unarmed students in JNU. They must be booked. The government is booking people for protesting, then it must lodge cases against the people who have gone inside a university campus and beaten up students and vandalised the premises,” said former AMU Students’ Union vice-president Hamza Sufiyan.

The AMU Teachers’ Association (AMUTA) released a statement urging the Chief Justice of India to take suo motu cognisance of the “unprecedented situation arising from Sunday’s assault on JNU students and teachers”.

A protest took place in Chhattisgarh’s capital Raipur at around midnight where about 300 people, including students and activists, protested against the violence in JNU.

In Patna, students’ union president Manish Kumar led the protest. Students associated with the All India Students Federation (AISF) also staged a protest outside Patna University office.

More than a dozen students, including the JNU Students’ Union (JNUSU) president, and a teacher were injured in the attack last evening.

Rival student factions accused each other of starting the violence that ended after police intervention and a flag march.

Members of JNUSU and JNU Teachers Association (JNUTA) alleged that the attackers were from the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (AVBP), a charge denied by the RSS-affiliated outfit.

Students and teachers said the attack happened at a “peaceful meeting” called by JNUTA and backed by JNUSU.

The mob was seen carrying hammers, rods, lathis and stones in videos and photographs that emerged out of the JNU campus. Students at several JNU hostels, including Sabarmati, Mahi Mandavi, Kaveri and Periyar, complained of attacks and vandalisation.

Reports said students blocked a police flag march led by special commissioner of police (law and order) RS Krishnaiah early on Monday in at least two places inside the campus.

They blocked the police at the t-point near Sabarmati hostel but the force managed to dodge the blockade and continued to march towards the convention centre.

The police were blocked again by the protesting students and they continued to shepherd the force towards the North Gate of the JNU campus.

Source: Hindustan Times

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