Clashes break out between rival student groups in Delhi

Police resort to baton charge to bring the situation under control

News Desk February 22, 2017
Rival student unions clash amid conflict over two students. PHOTO COURTESY: THE HINDU

DELHI: Clashes broke out between Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) and the All India Students’ Association (AISA) at Delhi University’s Ramjas College on Wednesday.

The reason behind the scuffle is said to be the cancellation of a seminar invite to Jawaharlal Nehru University students Umar Khalid, who was arrested on a sedition charge in 2016, and Shehla Rashid, The Hindu reported.

Khalid was the face of the 2015 movement that had demanded the release of the arrested students in the case.

The situation was sparked after a planned protest march by certain students to the Maurice Nagar police station had been disallowed.

As a result, police had to resort to baton charge to bring the situation under control.

No student was detained in connection with the incident, however.

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On Tuesday, the ABVP had forcibly closed down the college seminar room and pelted stones in protest against the invite to the two students termed them to be 'anti-nationals'.

Subsequently, the college administration was forced to withdraw the invitation to Khalid and Shehla.

In response, the varsity academia as well as members of AISA agitated over the college's decision to submit to the threat to freedom of speech.

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The protesters marched to the Maurice Nagar police station calling for action against ABVP members in connection with the alleged vandalism.

The ABVP members stopped the march from proceeding on Wednesday. Members also tried to enter the premises to 'rescue the captives'.

The college's principal Rajendar Prasad said he had engaged in discussion with organisers of the event and had requested both the groups to not derail the peaceful environment of the varsity.


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