Published: 16th October 2020
JNU students go against no-protest norms in force for COVID, allege manhandling by security
The university had previously issued a circular, asking the students to refrain from protesting, keeping the COVID situation in mind
Four students of the Jawaharlal Nehru University were allegedly manhandled and abused by the university guards on Thursday night. The students, JNUSU President Aishe Ghosh, General Secretary Satish Yadav, Joint Secretary Mohammed Danish and Councillor Preeti Umarao were staging a protest, condemning the disappearance of JNU student Najeeb Ahmed. Najeeb went missing on October 15, 2016.
According to students who were present on the campus, a security guard had pushed Satish and beat Preeti, causing her to fall down and break her spectacles. "Somebody twisted Aishe's arm. Abuses were hurled at Danish," says Akshat Seth, a PhD scholar. Even though there was a call for protest on October 15, the university administration had issued a circular, asking the students to not "sully the image of the university by violating the COVID-19 guidelines." They were also asked to refrain from holding the protest, considering the pandemic situation.
The circular had caused a lot of hue and cry among the students. "The protest was quite peaceful. Even though the university is closed, a few students are present here. We thought of gathering at a common point since yesterday marked the fourth year of Najeeb's mysterious disappearance. We do not know why the university wants to distance itself from this issue," says Akshat.
He says that the security guards had barricaded the gates, not allowing the students to enter the university's North Gate and at the same time, not allow the daily wage labourers to come out. "They had also deployed CRPF personnel. It turned quite violent all of a sudden," he says. He added that the students are now going to lodge a police complaint and the women among them are approaching the National Commission for Women.