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Left youth bodies call JNU attack 'planned', SAARC varsity faculty is 'outraged'

By Our Representative
Several Left-wing youth, students' and civil rights organisations condemning the violence "planned and meted out by groups of violent goons allegedly from Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP)" on students and faculty of Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) on last Sunday, saying, all the while Delhi Police, present there, refused to prevent the goons from entering the campus, and remained "mute spectators in this entire ordeal."
"What began as a peaceful procession by the JNU Teachers' Association was interrupted by masked mobs who entered the campus premises, armed with rods, and lathis clearly indicating their agenda to terrorise students inside the campus", the statement, issued on behalf of the Young India National Coordination Committee, said.
It added, "There are confirmed reports of students being badly beaten up in front of their hostels as well as being pelted with stones and bricks in other parts of the campus. Medical personnel were denied entry into the campus to tend to the injured. There are confirmed reports of ambulances being vandalized and medical personnel being assaulted and manhandled."
"In the past month", the statement reads, "Students in universities across the country such as Jamia Millia Islamia, Aligarh Muslim University, Cotton University, and Gauhati University, to name a few, have faced the brunt of brutal violence, often state-sponsored, for having simply exercised their right to protest."
According to the statement, "The fundamental right to peaceful assembly has been snatched away from students. Students across the country are being pushed to live in an atmosphere of fear and terror."
It adds, "It is worth mentioning here that the politics of our country has been shaped by student movements, and student politics is an indispensable part of a healthy democracy. The ruling dispensation’s clampdown on students is a shameful reflection of their insecurity about student unity and activism."

SAARC varsity faculty condemns attack

In a separate "solidarity statement", faculty members of the South Asian University, New Delhi, "shocked and outraged" over an armed and masked mob entering JNU campus on 5 January 5 and attacking students and faculty members, said, "Universities are spaces for intellectual debates and dissent where students, researchers and teachers come together to discuss ideas and cultivate critical thinking."
South Asian University is sponsored by the eight member states of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) -- Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.
Pointing towards how rioting went on for hours, injuring 40 students and faculty members, many of whom had to undergo treatment at the All-India Institute of Medical Sciences trauma centre, the statement said, "Violence of any kind has no place at these sites of learning."
Demanding that the police and other executive authorities "investigate into the matter expeditiously and bring all the perpetrators of this heinous crime to book", the statement appeals to the Supreme Court and the Delhi High Court to "take suo motu cognisance of this matter and direct the executive to act speedily and ensure the safety of JNU students and faculty members."

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