Saturday, 21st September, saw a series of protests concerning the Jadavpur University unrest in West Bengal. On one hand, All India Students’ Association (AISA), Pinjra Tod, and Students’ Federation of India (SFI) protested against the actions of Babul Supriyo and Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) supporters at the Jadavpur University. On the other hand, ABVP protested against left terror and condemned the heckling of Supriyo.
On Saturday, 21st September 2019, two protests broke out in the Faculty of Arts, North Campus of the Delhi University (DU). The first protest was organised by Pinjra Tod, AISA, SFI along with other left supporters, condemning the actions of the ABVP supporters and Babul Supriyo at Jadavpur University. In response, a counter-protest was held by members of the ABVP, calling for an end to “Left Terror” and “Red Terror” across the country, condemning the heckling of Supriyo at Jadavpur University.
The left-leaning parties and Pinjra Tod arrived at the Faculty of Arts first. The protest, planned for 12 p.m, began at 12:15 p.m. because the police force present on the venue impeded it. After reconciliation with the police force, the left began their protest surrounded by barricades with slogans like, “ABVP ki gundagardi, nahi chalegi! (Hooliganism by ABVP would not be accepted!)” and “ladenge tumse kadam kadam pe! (We will fight against injustice every step of the way!)” Outside these barricades, ABVP supporters began their own protest, condemning and to stop leftist and red terrorism, and violence, while chanting, “Desh ke gaddaro ko, goli maaro saalo ko! (We need to kill off the traitors!)”
Following this, the Akshit Dahiya and Shivangi Kharwal, the President and Joint Secretary of Delhi University Students’ Union (DUSU) respectively, addressed the crowd. Thereafter, ABVP proceeded to move closer to the leftist protest and burnt effigies with “Left Terror” and “Red Terror” written on them. When the effigy burning did not faze the leftist parties, the ABVP supporters went closer to barricades and shouted slogans like, “Bharat mata ki Jai! (Long live Mother India!)” and “Left Unity Muradabad! (Go down Left Unity!)” This resulted in the leftist parties and Pinjra Tod to turn to the barricades and chant, “Azadi!”
Sidharth Yadav, Delhi State Secretary of the ABVP, told DU Beat, “The incident is shameful! Does the freedom of expression allow anyone to pull [a] union minister by his hair? Tear a guest’s shirt? Manhandle a woman? Is what left did in Jadhavpur University not mob lynching? It’s high time we stop our selective outrage and expose such people. The left only believes in violence and this is what they have done in Kerala, bengal, JNU; wherever they are in power. We won’t tolerate this in DU. DU stand with Jadhavpur University and the space of debate and dissent won’t end here.”
While Kawalpreet Kaur, President of AISA, commented, “From JU to DU, wherever there is a strong students’ voice against BJP’s anti-people and anti-student policies, BJP government unleashes an all out attack on campus democracy.” She also added that DU students stood up when ABVP had vandalised a seminar in Ramjas College, and will also stand up against ABVP’s hooliganism across the country.
We contacted members of the SFI and Pinjra Tod for detailed responses, but they were unable to provide a comment on the same.
Feature Image Credits: Gauri Ramchandani for DU Beat