Kawalpreet Kaur, President of AISA was allegedly attacked on Friday in front of Kirori Mal College. DU Beat brings you a report on the incident.
In a Facebook post, Kawalpreet Kaur, the President of All India Student’s Association (AISA) at University of Delhi (DU) alleged that she had been attacked by the students of Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) in front of the hostel gate of the Kirori Mal College (KMC). She alleged that she, along with two of her friends, had gone to KMC for meeting a professor, where she was followed by a group of four people who “constantly abused” her. “It made me feel very humiliated and provoked me so much that my natural response was to slap him which I did. Immediately, without losing a second, the guy slapped me so tightly that I lost my balance for seconds and I had tears in my eyes,” Ms. Kaur said in her post. Her friend, Dhiraj Kumar, a Research Scholar at Ambedkar University, chased after the person who slapped her and was then assaulted by 12-15 people from the ABVP, the post mentioned.
DU Beat contacted Mr. Kumar, who had returned from the hospital after undergoing an X-ray test. “We were humiliated by two people from ABVP. When I saw that the guy who had slapped Kawal, was running away after slapping her, I started screaming that he had slapped a girl and ran away. The KMC guards who were there did not stop him and the guy escaped. I followed the guy and I saw around five ABVP people who accused me of chanting slogans like “Hindustan Murdabad”, when I denied them. They started beating me and they beat me a lot. They were trying to drag me outside the college but I tried to not come out. Around 15-20 people started to beat me up. Then, two people got hold of my legs and dragged me outside. The guards waiting did not even help me. In fact, they demanded I show them my ID,” Mr. Kumar told us.
“Finally, a teacher saw me from a rickshaw and controlled the people beating me. Then I quickly got into the college and the beating stopped. And I told the professor what happened. Later the police took me to the hospital and I was in the hospital for around 5-6 hours,” Mr. Kumar added.
Kawalpreet Kaur later filed a complaint against the incident in the Maurice Nagar Police station. In a Facebook post, she also named two people who she claimed were among the attackers, Sandeep Sharma, a first year B.A. honours student at KMC and Mohit Dahiya, the President of the KMC unit of ABVP.
Counter allegations from ABVP
When DU Beat contacted the Bharat Khatana, the Delhi State Secretary at ABVP for a statement, he said that Mohit Dahiya had been wrongfully implicated. “This is election propaganda by AISA. Whoever did this was wrong because one shouldn’t raise your hand on a girl. But Sandeep Sharma is not a part of ABVP. Mohit bhaiyya is a part of ABVP, but he is not involved in the incident at all…I just met them at the police station. The police questioned Mohit bhaiyya and Sandeep, checked the CCTV footage from the college and then released Mohit bhaiyya.”
Accusing Ms. Kaur for making wrong allegations, Mr. Khatana added, “Kawalpreet was the first to slap Sandeep Sharma. We have filed a counter-complaint against Kawalpreet Kaur for wrongfully implicating Mohit bhaiyya. Both Sandeep and Kawalpreet slapped each other. There is no involvement of ABVP here. This is just a plot to wrongfully accuse ABVP in anything (wrong) that happens in the college.”
DU Beat also talked to Mohit Dahiya who blamed Ms. Kaur for making a false accusation. “Me and my friend were simply going towards the parking. I saw Kawalpreet and her two friends were contesting, were fighting with Sandeep Sharma. One of her friends said that here are two goondas from ABVP (at us). Sandeep had been ragged by Kawalpreet and others. I was standing away and I ran away to complain to the Principal office. I had no role in this.”
Mr. Dahiya, in turn, shared a video of two people from AISA, Shreya and Tanmay, who came to “threaten” him about his alleged role in the incident. In the video, Tanmay is seen to be saying before walking away, “Tell us who those two people were.” Shreya joined in saying, “You are a student of the college. You should have some shame that girls come here and you slap them.”
When Shreya, an activist of AISA, was asked about her comments, she told DU Beat, “We know that Mohit Dahiya was not directly involved in the violence. But he was there the whole time, he provoked them (the mob) that these were people from AISA and he was involved completely. When me and Tanmay went there because we were so angry with what happened with Kawalpreet, we looked for Mohit Dahiya, and we obviously asked them that who were those people. Mohit Dahiya and Rajat Choudhury were there and they started to be disrespectful to us. Such people should be dealt in such a way. If they behave with us like us, as a woman I am not going to stay quiet. It’s enough that they think that the girls won’t say anything even if we are faced with violence.”
Kawalpreet Kaur was recently also allegedly assaulted by a mob at Satyawati College. She accused the ABVP for being responsible for the incident. In a recent post, she accused the ABVP for spreading “vicious hate propaganda” against her, and trying to “delegitimize the incidents of harassment” faced by her. Regardless of the allegations from both sides, it is increasingly clear that this is one of the most violent election seasons at DU.
Feature Image Credits: Kawalpreet Kaur on Facebook