Trinamool Congress Chhatra Parishad cadres on Wednesday broke the locks on the gates of Presidency University, attacked students and vandalised its heritage physics laboratory, Baker Lab, while policemen on duty allegedly refused to act in the absence of orders from higher-ups.
People protesting against the heckling of state finance minister Amit Mitra in New Delhi on Tuesday and waving TMCP flags beat up students and damaged the laboratory with impunity as policemen remained silent onlookers, both vice-chancellor Malabika Sarkar and registrar Prabir Dasgupta alleged.
Trouble began at 2 pm, when a TMCP rally protesting against the heckling of Amit Mitra was passing through College Street. “The attackers didn’t barge in once, but twice. But the police looked the other way,” Debostuti Roychowdhury, dean of students, said.
After hitting the students, the attackers left, only to come back again. This time, they ransacked the century-old Baker Lab.
“They broke furniture, tore posters, hit us and even threatened to rape the girl students. We’ve called a students’ strike at the university tomorrow and have also asked our teachers to join in,” Deborshi Chakraborty, a post-graduate student of history who was attacked and sustained several injuries, said.
Shomok Roy Choudhury, head of the physics department said, “The students who were attacked had nothing to do with politics. They were studying and working in the lab. I’m stunned! Is this the same university which the state government wants to project as one of the best in the country?”