Mumbai

Student protests rock Pune

In one voice: Students protest outside the Film and Television Institute of India in Pune on Tuesday.

In one voice: Students protest outside the Film and Television Institute of India in Pune on Tuesday.   | Photo Credit: Mandar Tannu.

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Thousands march from FTII to Savitribai Phule varsity

Progressive student groups and right-wing outfits staged protests in Pune on Tuesday over the attacks at the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU).

Thousands of students from the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII), Savitribai Phule Pune University (SPPU), Fergusson College, S.P. College and Abasaheb Garware College, and Yuva Sena workers took part in a march, which began at the FTII and ended at the main gate of SPPU. The protesters condemned the Narendra Modi-led government’s silence on the violence by holding placards decrying the ‘fascist’ regime, singing songs and voicing their dissent on the Citizenship Amendment Act and the National Register of Citizens.

The protesters also demanded the immediate release of Bhim Army chief Chandrashekhar Azad from Delhi’s Tihar Jail. Shubham Ghatge, a student from the FTII’s sound department, said, “The Home Ministry must accept responsibility for the violence and bring the offenders to book, else this pervasive student unrest across the country will only intensify. This incident is worrying proof of the extent to which anti-social elements feel powerful to mount such murderous assaults with impunity.”

Kuldeep Ambekar, leader of Loktantrik Janata Dal United’s students’ wing, said, “Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who otherwise keeps tweeting, has been silent in condemning the incident. This is a pre-planned conspiracy to silence opposition from non-BJP affiliated student groups and crack down on progressive thought.”

Mr. Ambedkar said the Centre by indulging in “State-sponsored violence” was trying to finish off student dissent in the country. He said violent attacks on campuses of eminent educational institutes were aimed at taking the attention away from the soaring unemployment. in the country.

Sandhya Sonawane, Nationalist Congress Party’s youth wing leader from Ahmednagar, said, “This kind of brazen assault is unpardonable. The students in India today are living in a climate of fear and dread. It is noteworthy that these incidents of unprecedented violence against students are all taking place under the Modi government with the police acting as a passive spectator, even covertly assenting to the actions of anti-social elements.”

Earlier, around 20 members of the NCP students’ wing blackened the billboard at the ABVP’s branch office at Sadashiv Peth, while raising slogans against the Prime Minister and the Home Minister.

“We have staged this protest in a constitutional manner without resorting to any violence of the kind that the right-wing ABVP generally resorts to. We have to make a statement against this kind of lawlessness. It happened in JNU yesterday, but could well happen in any campus in Pune tomorrow,” said Shrinivas Jagtap of the NCP’s students’ wing.

In retaliation, the ABVP held a protest outside Garware College, decrying Left-wing ‘hooliganism’ as being responsible for the violence at JNU. “The ABVP has nothing to do with the violence. It was perpetrated by Left-wing student outfits. We strongly condemn the incident as well as the NCP students’ wing’s action in taking the law in their hands and defacing the billboard of our office,” said Mayur Gite of the ABVP’s Pune wing.

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Printable version | Jan 19, 2020 4:52:24 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/student-protests-rock-pune/article30507915.ece

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