‘Shell Exploded in My Hand’: Injured AMU Students on Police Action

Students also allege that the police themselves destroyed several vehicles.

2 min read

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After Jamia Millia Islamia, police on 15 December cracked down on the student protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act at the Aligarh Muslim University campus. The violent clashes left at least four students severely injured.

One student, Tariq Arshad, admitted in AMU’s Jawaharlal Nehru Hospital, told The Quint that he nearly lost his entire hand to a tear gas shell that exploded in his hand.

“Four of his fingers are gone, the fifth is under observation.”
Mohammad Arshad, Tariq’s Brother

Another student, Nasir, said he had sustained two fractures to his thumb and had received about 20 stitches to his hand.

“To defuse the tear gas shell, I tried to put it under water. But before I could do that, it exploded in my hand... my thumb was severed, they reattached it later.”
Nasir, Student at AMU

Students also allege that the police themselves destroyed several vehicles.

"The police entered the campus and started shooting tear gas shells. They also lathi-charged students and damaged their vehicles. Eight to nine policemen were beating up one protester... they injured him badly. Three are in the ICU," said Ehatsham Zakir, a BTech student at AMU.

Zakir says he was beaten up in the lathi-charge and that he was injured in the back by a rubber bullet.

After the violence, the police came into the hospital to register FIRs against the injured because of which patients had to be removed from the emergency ward, he claims.

The police, however, say that students had instigated the clash by throwing stones first – an allegation which students deny.

“The students had gathered to protest because of rumors about Jamia. Our police was alert and we warned them not to exit the campus,” said OP Singh, DGP of UP Police. He added that some policemen were also injured.


‘Police Called in to Weed Out External Elements’

Unlike in Jamia Millia Islamia, the Vice Chancellor of AMU allowed the police to enter the campus.

According to the public relations officer of the university, Omar Peerzada, the police were called in because some external elements influencing the protests needed to be “weeded out.”

“To protect our infrastructure from damage and to ensure the safety and security of our students, the vice chancellor gave his assent.”
Omar Peerzada, PRO of AMU

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