Delhi

JNUSU distances itself from Vivekananda statue defacement row

Objectionable messages were found written on the pedestal of the yet to be unveiled statue. Photo: Special arrangement

Objectionable messages were found written on the pedestal of the yet to be unveiled statue. Photo: Special arrangement  

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Students say it’s an attempt to malign movement against fee hike

The walls inside the JNU administration block building leading up to the Vice-Chancellor’s office, the door of the office and the pedestal of a yet to be unveiled statue of Swami Vivekananda were allegedly defaced by protesters during the ongoing agitation against fee hike on the university campus.

The JNU Students’ Union on Thursday distanced itself from the defacement controversy and said it condemned the attempts to malign the students’ movement through acts which do not represent it.

“Our movement against the fee hike and the imposition of a draft hostel manual without consultation is a democratic movement against authoritarian ways of administrative functioning. Students with their future at stake due to the fee hike can never be perpetrators of any violence or undemocratic action,” the JNUSU said.

‘Bid to divert attention’

It added that the student community does not endorse any act of vandalism carried out in its name and whoever is involved is doing it in his or her own name and should not use the name of the movement to justify such acts. The JNUSU said the defacement was being used as a tool to divert attention from real issues that students were fighting for.

Members of the ABVP blamed “left-wing” students for defacing the pedestal and scribbling objectionable messages, mostly directed towards right-wing outfits, on it. They said that it would derailing the movement to roll back fee hike. In an appeal, the JNUSU asked the student community to exercise restraint and not encourage recklessness.

The JNU administration has not yet indicated whether it would be taking any action against those involved in the defacement activities.

Reacting to the defacement row, JNU V-C M. Jagadesh Kumar tweeted: “Vandalising Swami Vivekananda statue at JNU admin block which is yet to be unveiled is the most despicable act one can commit. Swami Vivekananda is India's youth icon. Disrespecting him in our University by some miscreants is not at all acceptable.”

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Printable version | Dec 9, 2019 10:06:58 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/jnusu-distances-itself-from-defacement-row/article29976878.ece

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