Protests by ABVP keep Delhi University on the boil, counter-campaigns lined up
Protest and counter-protests continues to rock Delhi University over last week’s violence at Ramjas College. The Delhi University Students Union (DUSU), led by the ABVP, held a Tiranga March on Monday, calling the demonstration with a giant national flag a course to instill nationalism in people, especially students.delhi Updated: Feb 28, 2017 01:30 IST
Protest and counter-protests continues to rock Delhi University over last week’s violence at Ramjas College.
The Delhi University Students Union (DUSU), led by the ABVP, held a Tiranga March on Monday, calling the demonstration with a giant national flag a course to instill nationalism in people, especially students.
They walked from Ramjas College to the Arts Faculty building.
Students and teachers from DU and JNU, Left and AAP-affiliated student groups will take to the streets on Tuesday.
Gurmehar Kaur, a student of Lady Shri Ram College, who started a campaign against the ABVP, will be participating in Tuesday’s protest. The 20-year-old daughter of an army martyr has been allegedly threatened with rape for her stand against the ABVP.
“The BJP teaches ABVP to use rape as an acceptable response to women fighting for free speech. The ABVP threatens women who speak their mind with rape threats,” Kaur said.
“Every political party needs to understand that students don’t want threats of violent and hate in educational institutions. On Tuesday, we will sound the death knell to hate politics in educational institutions…”
Some are calling the proposed march a protest against the rape threat; others have named it “Fight Back, DU”.
“We are putting up a united front against the ABVP,” said Kawalpreet Kaur, a leader of the Left-leaning AISA which was involved in last Wednesday’s clashes with right-wing students over a force-cancelled seminar at Ramjas College.
The protests began after a literary event at Ramjas College was called off as the ABVP objected to an invite to controversial JNU students Umar Khalid and Shehla Rashid to speak at the seminar. Khalid was accused of organizing an event at JNU last year in which anti-India slogans were heard.
Unhappy with the ABVP’s protest, students and teachers called a counter-demonstration last Wednesday and that turned into a street punch-up.
The Ramjas unrest had its effect on a proposed street play competition at Khalsa College, which had to be postponed.
Tuesday’s march will begin from Shri Guru Tegh Bahadur (SGTB) Khalsa College and end at the arts faculty building of DU.
With #FightbackDU and #DUagainstGoondagardi as slogans and hashtags, the protest is against the stalling of the street play competition at the college on February 23. The competition was put on hold allegedly after the ABVP objected to the content of some plays.
The National Students Union of India, the student wing of the Congress, has called a separate Mashaal rally. They will also hold a daylong hunger strike.
Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal has retweeted Kaur’s post, asking students to join the march.
The student wing of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), Chatra Yuva Sangarsh Samiti (CYSS), will participate in the demonstration.
First Published: Feb 27, 2017 23:50 IST