7 students booked for attack, Punjabi University shut for two days
A day after students protesting for round-the-clock hostel entry for girls were attacked at Punjabi University in Patiala, police on Wednesday booked seven students for causing hurt and criminal intimidation.
Also, the authorities decided to shut the varsity for two days — Thursday and Friday. With the weekend thereafter, the university will reopen on October 15.
On the statement of Amarjeet Singh and Surveer Kaur, a case was registered against Harwinder Singh Sandhu, former president of Secular Youth Federation of India (SYFI), Lovepreet Singh, president, Students’ Association of Punjab (SAP); Jatinder Jeetu of the Organisation of Punjabi University Students (OPUS); Jatin Verma, Vicky Rajput and Tejpreet Singh Sohi and one unidentified student.
At least 10 students were injured in the attack on Tuesday night.
“The decision (to shut the varsity) has been taken keeping in mind the security of students and to avoid further clashes. Since the matter is serious, we have written to the district administration and police to investigate the incident,” said university registrar Prof Manjit Singh Nijjar. He said they will hold discussion with students affiliated with the Democratic Students’ Organisation (DSO) and convince them to end their protest soon.
Heavy police deployment was made on the university campus. Besides Punjab Police personnel, Rapid Action Force (RAF) men were also deployed.
Deputy commissioner Kumar Amit said since the university is an autonomous body, the administration will act once they get written complaint.
“The action will be initiated against the erring students as per law,” he said.
SSP Mandeep Singh Sidhu said the situation is under control as the police are keeping an eye on anti-social elements.
The case was registered under Sections 323 (punishment for voluntarily causing hurt), 341 (punishment for wrongful restraint), 342 (wrongful confinement), 148 (rioting, armed with deadly weapon), 149 (unlawful assembly guilty of offence committed with a common object) 506 (criminal intimidation) of the Indian Penal Code.
The manner in which the incident took place on Tuesday night has raised many eyebrows. Even the closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras were not working as there was a power outage minutes before the protesters were attacked. The assaulters barged deep into the V-C office and ransacked the windowpanes and created havoc at protest site