Protest in varsity over seminar

Students detained as Swamy opens conference on Ram Mandir

Amid protests by student wings of Congress and Aam Aadmi Party, senior BJP leader Subramanian Swamy on Saturday addressed a controversial seminar on Ram Janmabhoomi in Delhi University. 

Police detained several students protesting outside the event venue. A contingent of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police Force also had to be deployed in the varsity to prevent the situation from going out of control. 

“Construction of Ram temple in Ayodhya is mandatory for revival of our culture. We have started and we will not give up until it is made but nothing will be done forcibly and against the law,” Swamy said in his inaugural address at the two-day seminar.

He claimed that former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi had promised him to support the construction of Ram Mandir in Ayodhya.

“The first help he did was that despite party opposition, he started the television serial on Ramayana which created a new excitement in public,” the BJP leader said, appealing to Congress to support the cause.

He lashed out at those opposing the seminar and dubbed them as “intolerant”. “Everyone has the right to protest in a democracy, but you should ask them why they have resorted to intolerance despite speaking against it,” he told reporters before addressing the conference.

Students from AAP’s student outfit Chhatra Yuva Sangharsh Samiti (CYSS), Congress-affiliate National Students Union of India (NSUI) and Left-wing organisations raised slogans and held placards to protest against Swamy’s seminar.
There were also reports of clashes between members of NSUI and RSS-affiliate Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP).

“It is rather unfortunate that the government is using educational institutions to push the RSS agenda of dividing the country on communal lines. They are trying every trick in the book to communalize our young minds,” Roji M John, national president of NSUI, said.

Various student and teachers groups have been opposing the university’s decision to offer its campus for the non-academic event saying that it is an attempt to communalise the campus.

But speaking at the seminar, Swamy said, “We wanted to do this seminar in one room but our enemies did not let it happen. This event is not complete without the protest happening outside.”

Earlier this week, he had said that the construction of the Ram Temple in Ayodhya would begin by the end of 2016 with the cooperation of the Muslim community.

The seminar titled “Shri Ram Janma Bhoomi Temple: Emerging Scenario” is being organised at DU’s Conference Centre by Arundhati Vashishtha Anusandhan Peeth (AVAP), a research organisation headed by Swamy.

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