The Vice-Presidential Candidate of All India Students’ Association (AISA) was allegedly attacked by members and supporters of Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) at Dyal Singh College.
In the University of Delhi (DU), the path of mainstream politics often crosses the town of vandalism, hooliganism, and violence. This time as well, the power play of violence came into play as ABVP has been accused of attacking the AISA Vice-Presidential candidate.
On 7th September, in lieu of the upcoming DUSU elections, Aftab Alam, the Vice-Presidential candidate from AISA, was campaigning in Dyal Singh College’s premises when, as stated by him, the supporters and candidates from ABVP attacked him. According to AISA, both Alam and Madhurima Kundu, DU Secretary of AISA, were injured.
Aftab Alam, Vice President Candidate from AISA and the prime victim explained DU Beat the entire incident, he said, “We used the pass given to us to enter the college, I entered with few of my supporters. I could witness few people wearing the ABVP tag standing in the college as I was entering. They started shouting to me that this Desh Dhrohi (Anti-national) won’t come inside. I was astounded how they could blatantly say that.”
He continued that he ignored them and tried to move ahead. But, one of the guys from the other group came and pushed him, kept both of his hands on his chest and tried to stop him from going inside. To show support, his fellow supporters held his hand and kept on going forward. However, all the boys from the other end came and heckled him. They repeatedly tried to stop him from campaigning and going into the college building.
He added that, “When all of this chaos was happening, 3-4 policemen from Delhi police were present there. However, they chose just to observe from the side. I told the ABVP goons that I’m a candidate and I’ve been given a pass, as per regulations I’m supposed to enter. They told me, they wouldn’t let me go inside. After constantly asking them why? All they did were stall me by asking me my ID card repeatedly. I would’ve shown them the ID proof if they had any authority, which they clearly didn’t.”
As stated by Alam, the ABVP members even tried to provoke the Delhi policemen by saying “AISA is the one that insults you, we (ABVP) are the one that support you, why are you supporting them?”
He further added, “They pulled me back, they snatched the garlands in my neck and it came to a point where they intentionally tore off my shirt. I could feel their hands strategically placed on my body to tear off the shirt, that’s how I can say it wasn’t an accident. After that, they begun with their chanting, they chanted slogans like ‘Yeh tukde karne walo ko, Bharat se nikalo (Those who want separation, should be sent outside)’ to provoke us and fake nationalist slogans taught to them by RSS like ‘Vandematram and Bharat mataki jai’.”
He went on to state that Madhurima Kundu, DU secretary of AISA, went ahead to defend him, so a girl also came forward from their side. Allegedly, this girl started catastrophically snatching Kundu’s face, which led to her getting severally injured. Apparently, the Delhi police and security personnel was standing right there and just observing all of this.
Alam added, “They didn’t even try to interfere even once, even the lady police personnel did nothing seeing this horrific scene. And when they did act, they acted in pure bias of the ABVP; they started to thrift only AISA members and not them. It came to a point, where on one side there was AISA and on the other there was ABVP with Delhi police in the middle with slogans being chanted from both sides. In all of this aggression, all police did was call by people and observe. In just a few moments, the two candidates of ABVP came to us with more than 50 goons and bouncers. We step aside because they could easily overpower us with their manpower and as soon as they came, the police stepped aside which is evident in the circulated video. All of this didn’t let us in.”
On the other hand, the ABVP has refuted all such claims citing political agenda as an objective behind such statements by AISA. Pradeep Tanwar, the Vice Presidential candidate, ABVP told DU Beat regarding these allegations, “AISA is just finding new ways of campaigning. It’s just pure politics; there is no truth to any of these things. It should be noted, that ABVP candidates came much after AISA being there. They were already present there, and then we came. These are just ways of defaming ABVP.”
This is not the only case where ABVP has been accused of using manpower for unfair purposes in these elections. The candidates of the SFI and the AISF alleged that they were attacked and their nomination forms were torn by members of the ABVP in the North Campus on Wednesday. Those claims were also strongly opposed and refuted by the members of ABVP repeatedly.
In the times where candidates cannot even be touched, let alone harassed, incidents like these raise many red flags. The true desire of each DU student to want free and fair elections often seems like a distant memory.
Feature Image Credits: India Today