Six months on, police still struggling for leads in Ramjas violence case

The Crime Branch officials told a court on Wednesday that they were examining students and teachers to identify the culprits involved in the clashes over an event at the Delhi University college. The police have also not been able to establish the veracity of a video of the event.
On February 22, violent clashes erupted between the Leftist students’ unions and the ABVP members, over a seminar at Ramjas College in which JNU students Umar Khalid and Shehla Rashid were invited.(Raj K Raj/HT PHOTO)
On February 22, violent clashes erupted between the Leftist students’ unions and the ABVP members, over a seminar at Ramjas College in which JNU students Umar Khalid and Shehla Rashid were invited.(Raj K Raj/HT PHOTO)
Published on Aug 04, 2017 12:00 AM IST
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Hindustan Times | By, New Delhi

The Delhi Police Crime Branch was still struggling to get conclusive leads in the case pertaining to violence at Ramjas College between two groups of students in February this year.

The Crime Branch officials told a court on Wednesday that they were examining students and teachers to identify the culprits involved in the clashes over an event at the Delhi University college.

The police have also not been able to establish the veracity of a video of the event that went viral on the social media.

The police submitted a nine-page action taken report (ATR) in the court in the case related to a complaint filed by advocate Vivek Garg. He had sought lodging of an FIR against those who allegedly raised anti-national slogans at Ramjas College on February 21 and 22. Garg alleged in his plea that the slogans were raised at the college by members of Left parties-backed students groups — All India Students Association (AISA) and Students’ Federation of India (SFI).

Regarding a video footage provided by the complainant, the police said as of now its authenticity is not clear and it has been obtained from an unknown social network and media websites and “apparently looks doctored”.

“Hence, in order to establish the same, requests have been sent to different electronic media sources to provide unedited/raw footage of the incident. There is no authentic source of the media content and it appears that it has been made from antecedent (sic) events such as previous speeches of Umar Khalid,” the report said.

Police said the video footage provided by the complainant is being analysed and will be sent to a forensic lab for examination.

“Efforts are being made to identify the persons indulging in the protests as the video footage, even if assumed to be not doctored or falsified, does not reveal the true and accurate identity of all the culprits involved. Sincere efforts are being undertaken to identify the culprits and fasten the culpability on the same,” the report said.

Police said it has requested the students and the general public to give statements and provide evidence available with them in the form of video/ audio recording to correctly identify the accused persons.

The report states that officials who were deployed on the arrangement duties on the day of incident are also being thoroughly examined and four police officers have already been suspended.

The report further states that the enquiry committee, which has been probing complaints relating to the incidents, has so far recorded statements of 62 witnesses, including students and police officials.

The court had earlier pulled up the police for not filing ATR despite being given several opportunities.

On February 21, members of RSS’ student wing ABVP had gathered outside the college and shouted slogans in protest against the seminar for which JNU students Umar Khalid and Shehla Rashid were invited. They allegedly pelted stones and disrupted the seminar. The next day, on February 22, violent clashes erupted between the Leftist students’ unions and the ABVP members, leaving several students injured.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Snehal Tripathi covers crime and policing in Delhi. A trained electronic and electrical engineer, she always wanted to be a journalist, starting this journey with the hyper-local edition of Hindustan Times in south Delhi.

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