Kolkata Police Lathicharge as BJP, Left Supporters Face Off
Kolkata: Protests against the attack on JNU students rocked parts of West Bengal. Police baton charged supporters of the Left and the BJP when the two sides engaged in a face-off in Kolkata. Earlier in the day, students of Jadavpur University joined the nationwide protests by raising slogans, burning tyres and singing songs against the RSS-affiliated ABVP and BJP government at the centre.
Starting at the JU campus, the rally took a U-turn, proceeded towards the Jadavpur Police Station and proceeded towards the Sulekha More. Eminent personalities such as filmmaker Anik Dutta and music manager Debojyoti Mishra joined the rally.
Beating up of teachers and students by goons and attacking girls’ hostel brought shame. ‘such attacks won’t deter us from continuing our struggle against fascist forces,’ a JU student said. Later in the day, CPI(M) and other Left parties also took out a rally from Jadavpur 8B Bus stand to Sulekha More. The students of Jadavpur University, activists of the SFI and members of other Left outfits took out a rally from 8B Bus Stand to Sulekha More in the evening.
A march was taken from the BJP from Bagha Jatin More to Jadavpur Police Station over the JNU issue and also ransacking of its party office in the area on Sunday night. Both sides came face to face at Sulekha More, leading to a brawl. BJP activists allegedly pelted stones prompting them to burn the flags of the BJP and ABVP.
JNU Violence: Masked, Armed ABVP Members Identified SFI supporters claimed that BJP workers used expletives. To be able to disperse the protesters after repeated efforts police supporters of the Left and the BJP as the two sides engaged in a face off. Police personnel were seen brutally beating up the protesters, including students and girls. Later on, South Suburban Division Deputy Commissioner of Police Sudip Sarkar said the intention of the baton charge wasn’t to beat up the students.
‘Our intention wasn’t to beat up the students. It was due to a confusion that some students were hurt. We wanted to disperse the BJP and ABVP supporters. We’re ready to apologise if any student is hurt,’ Sarkar told reporters.
‘We condemn violence within the JNU campus, which is a cradle of free and liberal thinking. Wish to impose their ideology on us and BJP and the ABVP wish to suppress thought. But we will continue our fight’ a Presidency University student said.
The Congress pupils’ wing burnt effigies of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah on College Street. The wing, Trinamool Chatra Parishad of the Trinamool Congress student , also took out rallies in various parts of the state. Rallies were taken out by college and university students throughout the state. Earlier in the day, West Bengal Chief Minister and TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee, termed the attack on teachers and students at Delhi’s Jawaharlal Nehru University as a’fascist surgical strike’ from the BJP. The saffron camp was quick to return fire and requested Banerjee to stop shedding ‘crocodile tears’. The attack triggered protests across the nation on Monday and the clamour grew for the resignation of the vice chancellor, who’s being blamed for inaction during the violence which left 34 people injured.