A Day After Victory, New JNUSU President Alleges Assault by ABVP

N Sai Balaji, the new JNUSU President, alleged that he was attacked by an ABVP mob early Monday morning.

4 min read

A day after he was elected the new president of the Jawaharlal Nehru University Students' Union (JNUSU), N Sai Balaji alleged that he and the former president, Geeta Kumari, were assaulted by members of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) in the early hours of Monday, 17 September.

Jnusu president com: Balaji who was beaten up by and threatened at the police station by ABVP goons addressing protest gathering

Posted by Nisam Asaf on Sunday, September 16, 2018

According to Balaji's statement, ABVP members had attacked some students at around 1 am on Monday. When the situation spiralled out of control, Balaji was reportedly asked to step in – which is when he too was assaulted by the ABVP.

These are two videos of ABVP lumpensim! In one it's clear how Saurabh Sharma is stopping the PCR Van in which I was...

Posted by N Sai Balaji on Sunday, September 16, 2018

Balaji further alleged that the ABVP 'mob' – led by former joint secretary Saurabh Sharma and Ashutosh Mishra – had also attempted to 'lynch' another former JNU student in the lawns of the hostels, who was saved and rushed for immediate medical aid.

The group now turned into a mob and started attacking Abhinay, a former JNU student in Jhelum, chased him and almost lynched him in the lawns. I ran with other students to save Abhinay, who by then had fallen unconscious after the beating, and took him to the ambulance and sent him for medical aid.
N Sai Balaji, JNUSU President

Terming his experience as "terrifying", Balaji said he was asked by his fellow students to sit in the Police Control Room vehicle to escape any attacks. However, the ABVP stopped the vehicle and ushered a member to sit along with him, he alleged.

These two students (Sharma and Mishra) were repeatedly stopping the PCR and threatening me. To my surprise Saurabh Sharma stopped the PCR between Jhelum and Sutlej and the ABVP student sitting inside the PCR van opened the door. Upon opening (the door), more threats were given to me and I was physically assaulted inside the PCR van by the ABVP students outside.
N Sai Balaji, JNUSU President

Balaji then states that he directed the PCR to take him to Vasant Kunj police station, to file a complaint, and is currently in the station fearing for his safety.

According to another statement released by the JNUSU, the mob has reportedly reached the gates of the Vasant Kunj police station, threatening to harm Balaji.

ABVP and RSS members have gathered outside the police station and are openly threatening to kill Balaji the minute he steps out.
Statement from JNUSU

Teachers from the university are also reportedly present at the station with Balaji.

ABVP’s Version of Events

Meanwhile, speaking to The Quint, ABVP-JNU President Vijay Kumar said the Left was narrating a false story, alleging instead that the violence was started by them.

Vijay alleged that a group of 15-20 people from AISA and their allies had gathered at Jhelum hostel, forcibly entering Sujal Yadav’s room and had started beating him up. They then entered the rooms of some others – Rajeshwar Dubey, Sushil Kumar, Onkar Srivastava and Piyush – and assaulted them as well, he alleged.

They beat up Sujal and some others, who are all admitted at AIIMS Trauma Centre currently. Sujal, Rajeshwar and four-five others are currently in the hospital, getting treated for their injuries. 
Vijay Kumar, ABVP-JNU President

A statement was also issued on the ABVP JNU Facebook page, explaining ABPV’s version of the story.

  • 01/03
    (Photo courtesy: Vijay Kumar/ABVP)
  • 02/03
    (Photo courtesy: Vijay Kumar/ABVP)
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    (Photo: courtesy: Vijay Kumar/ABVP)

Kumar further added that the ABVP members gathered outside the police station were not there to threaten and elevate the violence, but to file an FIR on the incident.

When they can go there to file an FIR on their version of events, why can’t we do the same? Let them say what they have to – the group outside the station is waiting to file an FIR as well. 
Vijay Kumar, ABVP-JNU President

JNU Admins Take Cognisance

As multiple reports of violence surfaced post the election results in the JNU campus, coupled with several allegations of the EVM’s being rigged, the JNU admin released two statements on the evening of Monday, 17 September.

N Sai Balaji, the new JNUSU President, alleged that he was attacked by an ABVP mob early Monday morning.
First statement issued by the JNU admin.

"It was brought to the notice of the Grievance Redressal Committee constituted for conducting the student union elections that the Election Committee started the counting process without some of the election agents," the first statement read.

In the another, the admin taking cognisance of the 'violent' situation in JNU, strictly barred students from organising rallies in the campus.

N Sai Balaji, the new JNUSU President, alleged that he was attacked by an ABVP mob early Monday morning.

‘Why Doesn’t the Left Retaliate to ABVP’s Violence?’

Kavita Krishnan, CPI-ML Politburo member and former JNU student, in a Facebook post, answered what she said was the most commonly asked question in the JNU saga: ‘Why doesn’t the Left retaliate to ABVP’s violence?’

जिन्हें JNU के साथियों के लिए चिंता हो रही है, ये पोस्ट उनके लिए है. अगर आपको लग रहा है कि JNU के साथी क्यों पिट रहे...

Posted by Kavita Krishnan on Monday, September 17, 2018

Alleging that the ABVP wants JNU to turn into a battleground, Krishnan claimed that should the Left get tangled in the web of violence, the VC would pounce at the opportunity to shut the university down and send the student activists to jail. In her post, she wrote:

In a campus like JNU, there is no point in answering violence with violence. The solution lies in a country-wide demand to remove the VC of JNU – who failed in curbing the violence in the campus because of his encouragement to the ABVP’s goondaism.

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