Skip to main content

Modi "knew" of police attack on Banaras girl students, violence was preceded by varsity's 'private security': NAPM

By Our Representative
One of India's biggest civil rights networks of India, National Alliance of People’s Movements (NAPM), has alleged that Prime Minister Narendra Modi very much knew of the Banaras Hindu University girl students' demonstration and the police lathicharge on them well in advance, suggesting he did nothing to stop it.
In a statement issued in Delhi in the wake of the lathicharge, which saw injury to several girls, followed by FIR against more than 1,000 of them, NAPM said, "It would be naive to assume that the Prime Minister, in whose constituency the university is situated, was neither aware of the students' protest when he was in the town, nor of the ruthless lathicharge which took place, soon after he left Banaras."
The statement, which said that Modi's "regular route was in fact changed, to avoid his interface with the protestors at BHU", comes amidst frantic attempts to what are being seen as efforts to plant stories in the media that Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah were "unhappy" over the way the Adityanath Yogi government handled the demonstration.
Strongly condemning what it called "state repression", NAPM called the police crackdown "cowardly and indefensible", insisting, the girl students were merely "seeking a university space with equal rights for women and freedom from sexual harassment and violence".
"That the long-standing and quite simple demands of the students were not being addressed and in fact survivors of sexual harassment were repeatedly being shamed by the male proctors, even as the identified perpetrators were being allowed to go scot-free, compelled the students to embark on a peaceful mass protest in the wake of relentless incidents of sexual harassment on the campus", the statement said.
According to NAPM, "Instead of engaging in a dialogue with the agitating students and resolving their basic and genuine grievances, the university authorities led by the vice chancellor at the behest of the state government chose to physically brutalize the students, late into the night and again on the next day, by unlawfully unleashing a rabid male police force on women students."
Signed among others by Medha Patkar of Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA), Aruna Roy, Nikhil Dey and Shankar Singh of the Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangathan (MKSS) and the National Campaign for People’s Right to Information, Prafulla Samantara of the Lok Shakti Abhiyan, and tens of other activists, the statement said, "We have learnt from credible sources that the vice chancellor and proctors allowed a group of ‘private security’ inside the campus, who were the first to unleash violence on students, before the police struck."
NAPM said, protests happened as girl students objected to "actions such as limiting library hours, early closure of college gates, curbs on late-evening usage of mobile phones by women students, embargo on serving of non-vegetarian food, coercing students to sign affidavits not to participate in political activity", adding, all of it "reeks of the patriarchal and regressive mindset of the BHU vice chancellor."
The statement said, "We completely endorse the demands of the young women students for effective mechanisms and systems in place to seriously and empathetically address grievances / complaints, especially that of sexual harassment and gender-based discrimination and violence, in line with the Vishakha Guidelines of the Supreme Court and the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013."
"These mechanisms must be formed with the active involvement of the women students, women faculty and well-known, credible and committed women civil society activists", the civil rights organisation insisted,adding, it is part of the larger design to " saffronize" universities, as seen in what had happened in the Jawaharlal Nehru University and earlier in the Hyderabad Central University.

Comments

TRENDING

World Bank clarifies: Its 26th rank to India not for universal access to power but for ease of doing business

By Our Representative
In a major embarrassment to the Government of India, the World Bank has reportedly clarified that it has not ranked India 26th out of 130 countries for providing power to its population. The top international banker’s clarification comes following Union Power Minister Piyush Goyal’s claim that India has “improved to 26 position from 99” in access to electricity in just one year.

"Misleading" satellite images being shared on Balakot surgical strike on Jaish camp

By Dr Vinay Kate*
With every passing day more questions are being raised about the surgical strike India did in Balakot as a response to Pulwama attacks. So far the Indian media has claimed mass casulaty of 300+ terrorists of Jaish-e-Mohammad in this surgical strike, but there is hardly any report from foreign media about the same.

Extreme repression, corporate loot, cultural genocide "characterise" India's tribal belt

Counterview Desk
As Lok Sabha polls approach, there is considerable ferment in one section of the population -- India's Adivasis, forming about 8.6 per cent of India's population. Things became particularly critical following the February 14, 2019 Supreme Court order, allegedly seeking to evict lakhs of tribals from their forest lands.

Industry in India "barely growing", export growth 0%, whither moral anchors?

Counterview Desk
In a sharp critique of the Modi government, the Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad (IIM-A), one of world renowned economist Prof Kaushik Basu, who is Professor of Economics and Carl Marks Professor of International Studies at Cornell University, has told students at the IIM-A’s 54th Annual Convocation on March 16, 2019 that they have a “special responsibility” on their shoulders, “the responsibility to reject narrow sectarianism, uphold scientific thinking, openness to new ideas, and freedom of speech.”

Gujarat model? Industrial effluents "invade" borewells, discharge coloured water in farms

By Rajiv Shah
In a major embarrassment for Gujarat model, of the 21 samples taken by officials of the state government's environmental watchdog Gujarat Pollution Control Board (GPCB) in two villages of Vadodara district and analyzed by its laboratory in Gandhinagar, the state capital, to find out pollution level in groundwater, 16 were assessed as highly contaminated – these were, in fact, found to be discharging reddish, brownish, reddish, or yellowish water.

Refugees as criminals? US govt report blames Amit Shah for calling Bangladeshis termites

Counterview Desk
The chapter “Freedom of Movement” of the US State Department’s “India 2018 Human Rights Report”, released recently, has criticized BJP chief Amit Shah for terming alleged Bangladeshis who may be in Assam as “termites”, because their names were struck down from the list of National Register of Citizens, under preparation in the state.
Pointing out that four million residents were excluded from Assam’s final draft list, leading to “uncertainty over the status of these individuals, many of whose families had lived in the state for several generations”, the report regrets, the Indian law does not even contain the term “refugee,” treating refugees like Rohingiyas as “any other foreigners.”
“Undocumented physical presence in the country is a criminal offense. Persons without documentation were vulnerable to forced returns and abuse”, the report says.
Text of the Freedom of Movement chapter: The law provides for freedom of internal movement, foreign travel, emigration, a…

Congress would win just 9 of 26 Lok Sabha seats: Gujarat Assembly segment-wise analysis

By Rajiv Shah
Even as the Congress plans its first working committee meet in Gujarat on February 28 after an almost 58 year gap, there is reason to wonder what is in store for India’s grand old party in a state which has been long been a BJP bastion – in fact ever since mid-1990s. Ahead of the then assembly polls in late 2012, talking with me, a senior Gujarat Congress leader, currently Rajya Sabha MP, frankly said he saw no reason why Congress would win.

"Pro-corporate" Supreme Court order on FRA would further marginalize Adivasis

By VS Roy David, JP Raju*
For millions of Adivasis and other traditional forest dwellers February 13, 2019 will go down in history as the day of apocalypse. This is like the proverbial Black Friday where millions of most marginalized people of India were ordered by malicious anti-people draconian Supreme Court order depriving them the life and livelihood by evicting them from their habitats.

Financial inclusion? Not micro-loans; India's poor "need" investment in health, education

By Moin Qazi*
India has grown into a global powerhouse. Its economy is soaring but the picture on the ground is still quite arid. The green shoots that you see are only a patch of its landscape. Most Indians are hapless victims of inequity. India is one country where intense poverty abounds in the shadow of immense wealth.

India, Pakistan told to eliminate nuclear weapons: N-war "would kill" 2 billion

Counterview Desk
The International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW), a non-partisan federation of national medical organizations in 64 countries, representing tens of thousands of doctors, medical students, other health workers, and concerned citizens, claiming to share the common goal of creating a more peaceful and secure world freed from the threat of nuclear annihilation, has warned that “an unprecedented global catastrophe” awaits the globe against the backdrop of warmongering in India and Pakistan.