Published: 02nd November 2022
Were students from Kerala attacked at DU for wearing dhotis? MP writes to Education Minister
The Students' Federation of India has claimed that ABVP members attacked four students from Kerala while in an intoxicated state
An alleged attack on students from Kerala at Delhi University on November 1 has been brought to the notice of Union Minister for Education, Dharmendra Pradhan. Member of Parliament (Rajya Sabha) from Kerala, AA Rahim, wrote a letter to Pradhan today, November 2, and requested "urgent intervention" to ensure the alleged attackers are "brought to justice".
"It is a shame that such an attack is happening around the campus spaces of one of India's premier universities and in the national capital. Urgent measures must be taken to ensure that the incident is investigated thoroughly and that the assaulters are found and brought to justice," the MP said. Rahim also claimed that the students were targetted by an "intoxicated gang" based on their attire. MP Rahim, in his letter to the Education Minister, wrote, "Steps must also be taken within the university to ensure that all stakeholders including the students, administration and faculty are sensitised to respect diversity."
Requested urgent intervention of Union Minister of Education, Shri. @dpradhanbjp on the #Xenophobic attack on Delhi University students from Kerala; to bring the culprits to justice, to make Delhi a safer place for students and to make sure that such incidents are not repeated. pic.twitter.com/OKycuasNqF— A A Rahim (@AARahimdyfi) November 1, 2022
In a statement, the Students' Federation of India (SFI) claimed that four students were attacked by students from the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) who were allegedly intoxicated. The attackers reportedly verbally abused the students from Kerala for wearing dhotis. The SFI statement also condemned the Delhi University Students Union (DUSU) for being "inefficient" in addressing hate crimes on campus.
DUSU Secretary Ashish Lamba confirmed to EdexLive that the attack did indeed take place yesterday and that the attackers were members of the ABVP. "It has come to our attention that students from Kerala were attacked yesterday by the members of the ABVP. Among the students attacked, two were members of the SFI," Lamba said. He added that the students who were allegedly attacked were wearing dhotis and traditional attire as part of a programme conducted for the freshers.
When asked if discrimination against students from South India was a problem at DU, the DUSU secretary remarked that the incident from yesterday might have been political in nature. "I have spoken to students from Kerala as well. The reason behind the incident still isn't known," he added. Lamba also added that the issue must be addressed by the college authorities if the ABVP members who attacked the students were also from the same college.
The SFI has also claimed that the alleged attack on students from Kerala should not be viewed in light of the events from last year when a Professor from DU's Kirori Mal College accused students of Kerala of "Marks Jihad". Prof Rakesh Pandey made that remark amidst controversy around the marks allocation by the Kerala State Board.
EdexLive has reached out to the students who were injured in this alleged attack and the article will be updated.