Usually called as a politically ‘shy’ University, this Tuesday, Jamia Millia Islamia erupted with thousands of students outside the Vice Chancellor’s office which was subsequently followed by a muscle fight between the protesters and some goons, which are alleged to be hired by the administration itself.
The event raises significant questions that ought to formulate certain conjectures, but through a detailed assessment and statements from both the parties, we have tried to trace down most possible answers to these questions.
The first question that arises in our cerebral manifestations is what was the protest all about?
Apparently, yesterday on 22 October, a number of student organisations arranged a Solidarity March from the Central Canteen to VC’s Office as an extension of the 10-day long ongoing protest against the University administration which has issued a show cause notice in the name of five students of the University.
What was it with regard to the show cause notice?
The five students who have received the show cause notice were among the 12 students who were a part of a symbolic protest probing the intrusion of an Israeli delegation that was supposed to be the country partner of ‘Global Health Zenith Confluence’19’, organized by the Faculty of Architecture and Ekistics, JMI, on October 5, 2019.
According to the administration, the students were rewarded with this show cause for hampering the University’s image and vandalising in an otherwise peaceful campus with an unnecessary protest.
One of the members of the All India Students Association says as we quote,
“It is our fundamental right to express our voices and it is utter nonsense to say that we engaged in some kind of vandalism, rather it was us who were manhandled by the guards.”
What was the progression of the protest?
For past one week the All India Students Association and the Dayar-e-Shauq Student Charter, another student organisation assembled near the central canteen demonstrating their contempt regarding the administration, and demanding for a revocation of the show cause notice against the students and a total boycott of Israel.
What happened at the Solidarity March?
On the ninth day of the protest, the students planned for a peaceful protest seeking a reply from the administration regarding the show cause notice and a face-to-face talk with the vice chancellor, reportedly almost a thousand students joined the March chanting slogans of ‘Inquilab‘ and ‘Azadi‘. After a day-long protest, in the second set of the day, some 10-15 students appeared at the venue, asking the protesters to vacate the place within next 30 minutes, failing which severe repercussions may befall upon them (as reported by one of the protesters).
Subsequently, the protesters refused to withdraw the protest following which they were attacked with flower pots and which were later dragged around, creating a huge scuffle, injuring many students; one of them being Shah Alam of B.A. (Hons.) Political Science is reported to be in extremely critical condition. The varsity campus was then flooded with a Delhi Police delegation which attracted lots of eyeballs.
The students then went on to protest for the entire night and were joined by more students from all over the University in the later part of the tenth day of protest. Songs and slogans complemented the fulmination, with flags of Palestine and India being raised outside the office to signify the protest. They were also extended support by the Hon’ble MP of the Thissur Constituency, Mr. T N Prathapan, who expressed his grievances against the authority and ensured his support to the students protesting. Protest also witnessed support from the JNU General Secretary, Satish Chandra Yadav, who backed the students with his words.
The students have now raised their demands to be fulfilled by the administration, following which they are ready to withdraw the protest and return to the classes which elsewise witnessed a boycott of classes in the University today.
The demands by the protesters include three major points which include, a withdrawal of the show cause notice against the five students, an assurance of the safety of the protesters which ensures no action to be taken against the students, and a serious action against the ‘goons’ that prompted the attack on the protesters.
What happens further is yet to be discovered but this incident has surely engaged number of students who have expressed their solidarity and support in concerning times.
Feature Image Credits: The Jamia Review
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