Twenty nine students were arrested after they tried to burn an effigy of national BJP president Amit Shah at BHU gate on Thursday, demanding immediate release of JNU students’ union president Kanhaiya Kumar.
Kumar has been arrested for sedition in connection with an event in the JNU where anti-national slogans were allegedly raised on February 9. He was remanded to judicial custody till March 2, 2016 by a Delhi court on Wednesday.
Those arrested at the BHU included the All India Students’ Union (AISA) and the National Students Union of India (NSUI) members. While AISA is a Left-wing student organisation, NSUI is the student wing of the Congress party. The JNUSU president is associated with the All India Students Federation (AISF), the student wing of the Communist Party of India (CPI).
The AISA members were staging a demonstration while the NSUI members made an attempt to set the effigy of Shah afire.
They were first sent to the reserve police lines and later released on bail.
This also led to the exchange of heated words between the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) members and a group of AISA and NSUI members, police said.
According to the police, after the students were prevented from burning BJP leader’s effigy, they started shouting slogans and tried to create a ruckus. So, the cops arrested them.
Station officer, Lanka police station, Sanjiv Kumar Mishra confirmed the arrests.
“As a preventive measure, twenty nine students were arrested after they tried to disrupt peace,” he said.
Moreover, CPI (Marxist Leninist) district secretary, Manish Sharma, who was also part of the protest, told HT over the phone, “We didn’t make any attempt to breach peace. We were protesting peacefully. A group of ABVP members reached the venue and protested our move which led to exchange of arguments.”
Sharma claimed that the ABVP members attacked one of the AISA members after the police arrested them. Manish Sharma, Sarita Patel, Kusum Verma, Sagar Gupta were among those arrested. He said the protest would continue if Kanhaiya Kumar was not released. After being set free, Sharma said the police action was one sided.
On the other hand, ABVP leader at the BHU Nimesh Ranjan claimed, “We neither visited the spot nor we beat any AISA member. The allegations are baseless.”
Ranjan, however, said he heard that a group of students, who was in no way connected to ABVP, exchanged heated arguments with the protesting groups.