Jinnah portrait row: AMU students on indefinite dharna

The campus has virtually been converted into a fortress with the Rapid Action Force and the police deployed all over. AMU students’ union members who were injured in Wednesday’s lathicharge have alleged that the outsiders had plans of attacking former Vice President Hamid Ansari, who was present for a function on the campus.
AMU Students Protest

Lucknow, May 3 : A day after students were lathicharged for protesting the police inaction against “rightwing outsiders” raising anti-Mohammad Ali Jinnah slogans on the Aligarh Muslim University campus, students on Thursday sat on an indefinite dharna at the university gate.

The campus has virtually been converted into a fortress with the Rapid Action Force and the police deployed all over. AMU students’ union members who were injured in Wednesday’s lathicharge have alleged that the outsiders had plans of attacking former Vice President Hamid Ansari, who was present for a function on the campus.

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Ansari, a former Vice Chancellor of AMU, was to be conferred a life membership of the students union. However, after the violence, the function was cancelled and Ansari was escorted out amidst tight security. The AMU Teachers’ Association has demanded the Central government to institute a time-bound judicial inquiry into the incident and to punish the culprits.

The AMUTA Executive Committee has condemned the “deliberate criminal activity carried out by aggressors who came from outside the university” as well as the “brutal action taken by the police against AMU students instead of taking action against the criminal aggressors”. It has demanded immediate action against the culprits.

Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath said he had sought a comprehensive report on the Aligarh incident from the district administration. CM Yogi, however, made it clear that “Jinnah ko hum samman nahi de saktey” (We cannot respect Jinnah).

Meanwhile, Rihai Manch spokesperson Shahnawaz Alam alleged that the controversy over Jinnah’s portrait had been caused to create an anti-Muslim environment and polarize votes for the upcoming bypolls in Kairana and Nurpur.

Alam said those who made ‘anti-Yogi-Modi’ comments on social media and were immediately put behind bars, whereas armed rightwing goons planning to attack the former Vice President were left scot free.

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