With the Delhi University (DU) student elections just a fortnight away, the All India Students’ Association (AISA) on Friday demanded police protection for its candidates and cadres against “violence from ABVP”.
“The ABVP has become the censor board in the campus and reserves the authority on what is allowed and what is not allowed… The election cannot be free and fair as long as their violence continues,” DU President of AISA Kawalpreet Kaur told the press here.
She demanded from the DU administration that the Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) — the student wing of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh — candidates who engaged in violence during the incident in Ramjas College should be stopped from contesting.
“There is an atmosphere of fear all round the campus, the situation is even worse in South Campus where one hardly sees any students but ABVP goons,” she said as she showed two ABVP candidates’ pictures (Ankit Basoya and Mahamedha Nagar) in an attacking pose during the Ramjas incident.
A teacher from Shri Ram College of Commerce said there is no freedom anywhere on the campus and one doesn’t come across any cultural activities being organised there by any group but those from ABVP.
“My complaint is not just against ABVP but against the government which has allowed such elements to flourish… Even police is under their pressure. Such environment is anti-education, not because of monopoly of one ideology but because of consensus of view within that ideology. They all use same slogans and carry same ideas,” said Sanjay Bohidar, a DU professor for the last 35 years.
He also recounted how former Delhi University Students’ Union President Satender Awana rebuked St Stephen’s teacher Nandita Narain and Law Faculty Dean Ved Kumari in front of everyone and yet no charges have been pressed against him by either the police or the university authorities.
“This is not just bad for education or the university, but for the entire country,” he said.
In a video from last year, which gained much traction on social media, Awana was seen verbally heckling Ved Kumari in full view of police and others.
Since the violent clashes between students of the two parties at Ramjas College in February, the AISA students have continually alleged being beaten up or threatened by the ABVP members.
Some of these incidents have also resulted in FIRs — the latest example of which comes from Kaur, who had approached police just days ago when she was, she alleged, abused and called names by ABVP members at Satyawati College.
The Delhi University students elections will be held on September 12.