‘Pleaded I Am Blind, Was Hit With Rod,’ JNU Students on Violence
At least 30 people, including students and faculty members, were taken to AIIMS after suffering injuries.
Video Editor: Varun Sharma & Abhishek Sharma
On Monday, 6 January, less than twenty-four hours since a masked mob, armed with rods and sticks, laid siege on Jawaharlal Nehru University, tension prevailed in the campus.
Violence broke out at Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) on 5 January night after masked men and women attacked students and teachers, and damaged property in the campus, prompting the administration to call in the police. At least 30 people were injured and admitted to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in Delhi.
JNU Students’ Union President Aishe Ghosh suffered a head injury. The JNU administration said, “Masked miscreants armed with sticks were roaming around, damaging property and attacking people”.
The Quint spoke with students who were beaten up on Sunday and later taken to AIIMS Trauma Care Centre. Among those to whom The Quint spoke, one claimed to have been pushed off a first floor balcony while a blind student alleged he was beaten with rods despite pleading with the attackers.
“I suffered two blows on my chest one of the attackers pushed me off the first floor balcony. I wanted to get back to the hostel but I was scared as the mob was armed,” said Santosh, a PhD candidate.
Across the hallway from him Suryaprakash, a blind PhD candidate in Sanskrit, said a mob broke open his door at 6:45 pm on Sunday and beat him on the back with an iron rod.
“I kept pleading with them that I am blind. One assaulter said I am not blind another said, ‘So what if he is blind? Beat him up,” Suryaprakash told The Quint.
Students claim that the violence started on Saturday and escalated on Sunday. Apeksha Priyadarshini, a member of JNUSU and BAPSA (Birsa, Ambedkar Phule Students Association) claimed that the clashes had broken out on Saturday and students, including her were attacked.
“The violence started on Saturday, 5:30 am onwards. Around 40 guards started assaulting peacefully sleeping students in the school area. They were trampled upon, one of the students were pushed towards a bonfire,” Priyadarshini told The Quint.
“These people were all ABVP students and activists from within the campus. It is in those clashes that I injured my arm. One of the ABVP students attacked me, twisted my arm and started hitting me,” she added.
Meanwhile, ABVP supporters deny any involvement in the attack, alleging that the episode had been orchestrated by the Left.
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