Published: 22nd February 2018
ABVP gatecrashes Kawalpreet Kaur's speech during college event on women's safety, creates ruckus
The student leader was stopped during a programme on women's safety by the ABVP and forced to leave the premises. There was a good deal of violence involved, going by the videos being shared online
Student activist Kawalpreet Kaur was attending a programme on women's safety at Satyawati College in the national capital when around "40 goons from the Akhila Bhartiya Vidya Parishad (ABVP)" entered the auditorium and disrupted the programme. Kaur, who had been invited as a speaker escaped unharmed but said, "Had the professors not been there I could have been hurt and killed". In a video and several posts that have since gone viral on social media, Kawalpreet Kaur is seen sitting down while chaos ensues in the college auditorium. Amid the ruckus, a faint voice calls for some courtesy and decorum. In the video, a senior gentleman who could be faculty is seen comforting the activist while she remains seated, away from the chanting opposition.
Damage and done: The ABVP activists also damaged AISA's vehicle
In a Facebook post around noon on Thursday, Kawalpreet Kaur posted, "I am going to Bharat Nagar police station right now. I had gone to Satyawati College in the morning as a speaker for a talk on digital safety conducted by Google and She The people TV. After the talk was about to get over many ABVP people gathered in the auditorium and started disrupting the event. They mishandled the professors and were after me and when police came to rescue me out they asked them where are you taking her? We will take her life."
"The talk was on women's safety and we can understand why ABVP had to disrupt it. Please come to the police station right now. Please come in large numbers there. No to violence in DU. Let us kick these (sic) out," said a livid Kawalpreet Kaur.
Several students also posted online about the incident. "ABVP attacked a seminar on Digital Safety at Satyawati College where Kawalpreet Kaur was a speaker. They vandalised the seminar, manhandled students and teachers, attacked and threatened Kawalpreet", said Sucheta De, an All India Student Association (AISA) member.
"When the police came to rescue Kawal, they even confronted the police asking why was she been taken away. Kawal and other students are going to Bharat Nagar Police station right now to file FIR. Everyone is requested to reach there. This continuous hooliganism cannot be tolerated. First these goons issue threats and abuse women activists online and when women speak up, they physically attack them. So much for Beti Bachao Beti Padhao. (We) Demand immediate punishment for the goons. No more impunity" added Sucheta De.
Meet and greet: The ABVP outrage is alleged to have been fuelled by Kawalpreet's tireless campaign through the national capital for a callback on metro fare
The incident put paid to normal functioning of the college, "Meanwhile, Satyawati College morning staff association meeting is going on in the college and the classes have been suspended. We hope that they immediately rusticate those students goondas who had not only disrupted the talk but also harassed the professors and principal," she posted at around 2.30 pm on Thursday.
The issue appears to be a backlash to Kaur's recent campaign to unite students across DU campuses to protest the hike in metro fees.