On 17th May, three activists from the Students’ Federation of India (SFI) were allegedly attacked with lathis by unidentified men at the Faculty of Arts after they were protesting along with the St. Stephen’s College Staff Association. They blamed Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) for the attack.
Three SFI activists, who wish to remain anonymous, were allegedly attacked by goons when they were resting after a protest by the St. Stephen’s College Staff Association. One of the activists suffered head injuries.
An activist recalls the ordeal, “It was raining, suddenly almost five people with faces covered with handkerchief came and asked whether we were from SFI. When our answer was affirmative, they first abused us and then attacked us with the lathis they had with them.” He added that one of them tried to attack the female activist, but she was standing far away and started calling for help. “After seeing people coming towards us, the attackers fled.”
In the social media posts, SFI has blamed ABVP for the attack. “Yes, it can’t be proved, but it is obvious,” claims one of the activists. “They first identified us as members of SFI and then attacked us. It is a sheer display of their money and muscle power.”
A police complaint has been filed at the Maurice Nagar Police Station in lieu of the incident, however, the activists don’t have a lot of faith in the authorities either. “We were attacked after the Virgin Tree protests at Hindu College, we have been attacked at the Vishwavidyala metro station, we had photos, videos and even CCTV footage of the incident. Yet, the police failed to take action.”
Refuting allegations, Sidharth Yadav, Delhi State Secretary of ABVP denies allegations. “Time and again they come out with their own thought-out incidents followed by tagging ABVP as goons. It is an old tactic, but whatsoever it may be, it must be thoroughly inquired. The allegations must also be investigated and any perpetrator must also be caught.” He added that a police complaint is a must and if anything comes up in the investigation or any name from ABVP comes up, strict action should be taken. “But I don’t think that would be required, it is just their old style of propagating false news against us. Their previous allegations, too, have failed to furnish any material evidence, despite them beating our members at Hindu College and walking away scot-free.”
Feature Image Credits: Students’ Federation of India