Swaraj Abhiyan, a group formed by civil society leaders Yogendra Yadav and Prashant Bhushan, on Saturday condemned the “harassment” of Allahabad University students’ union president Richa Singh, alleging it pointed to a “clear design of stifling the freedom of expression and muzzling of democratic rights of thinking individuals”.
In a statement, the Swaraj Abhiyan said the “harassment” of Singh is “unfortunately, not a one-off case. A clear design of stifling the freedom of expression and muzzling democratic rights of thinking individuals can be seen. Be it the case of Rohith Vemula in Hyderabad or Kanhaiya Kumar in JNU, a clear pattern of furthering a dirty political agenda in educational institutions has come to the fore.”
Swaraj Abhiyan national president Anand Kumar said, "After Hyderabad and JNU now it seems is the turn of Allahabad University to be targeted by the ruling party. It seems that a conspiracy is being worked out to remove students’ union president Richa Singh and pave the way for replacing her with ABVP (Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad) activist."
Swaraj Abhiyan has condemned this high-handed attitude and warned the Allahabad University administration as well as the Central government against any undemocratic and unconstitutional steps in the campus. Richa Singh has written a letter to the President of India complaining against the harassment by Allahabad University on the behest of ABVP and the ruling party.
Swaraj Abhiyan appealed to the President to take note of this disturbing trend across university campuses.
Be it the case of Rohith Vemula in Hyderabad or Kanhaiya Kumar in JNU, a clear pattern of furthering a dirty political agenda in educational institutions has come to the fore, the statement said.
Earlier, in the statement, Swaraj Abhiyan raised “strong objection to the dirty games being played by Allahabad University administration, which is harassing the students’ union president Richa Singh by trying to cancel her admission”.
It said “Richa had opposed the invitation extended by the other four ABVP office-bearers in the students’ union to the BJP MP from Gorakhpur Yogi Adityanath, known for his divisive and polarising utterances. The ABVP, which has been finding it tough to come to terms with a female winning the post of president, has been up in arms against her right from day one when she got elected”.