Students, who are running a campaign against discriminatory ‘curfew’ hostel timings for girls across varsities in cities, have alleged that they are being threatened to give up the protest.
At least two students, who are part of the ‘Pinjra Tod - Break the hostel locks’ campaign, have claimed that they received threats from a man who identified himself as an ABVP volunteer.
Shambhavi Vikram Singh and Subhashini Shriya, both DU students, said that on Monday evening they received a call from a person who claimed to be a student of Satyawati College and ABVP volunteer. He threatened to beat them if they stuck posters and covered the ABVP posters.
“The posters were pasted on the Wall of Democracy and everyone has the right to do so. This man told me that if we pasted more posters he will not only beat us but hit me in such a place that I would remember,” said Singh.
As soon as the news came to light, support started pouring in for the two students and an FIR was registered. The All India Students’ Association (AISA) also extended its support to the campaign.
However, ABVP dissociated itself with any such threat, clarifying that the student outfit has nothing to do with the statement. In a statement issued by Saket Bahuguna, ABVP state secretary, the outfit called it a “vicious propaganda against them unleashed by AISA”.
Apart from DU, students of Jawaharlal Nehru University, Jamia Millia Islamia and Ambedkar University are part of the Pinjra Tod (Break the cage) campaign.
Graffiti of the campaign can be spotted across DU’s north campus and an online petition and signature drive is also on to create awareness. A Jan Sunwai (public hearing) is also scheduled for October 20 at Jantar Mantar.
“Right now, we are about 60 students who are actively involved in the campaign, but on the online space our supporters are more than 2000. It is not only the students but also those who have been part of this system and faced discrimination,” said Apviksha Das, a research scholar from JNU.
Through the campaign, the students also aim to address the issue of high rents, lack of hostels in different universities and lack of sexual harassment complaints cell. This is second such campaign at the university-level. Earlier it was the ‘Pad against Sexism’ which had found widespread support all across the country.