Jamia VC demands probe into 'illegal' police entry

Jamia Millia Islamia Vice-Chancellor Najma Akhtar addresses a press conference over Sunday night's alleged police crackdown in the university. PTI

Vice-chancellor of Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI) university Najma Akhtar on Monday demanded that a high-level probe should be conducted into the police crackdown on the students, saying police personnel entered the campus without any permission of the university administration and beat up innocent students.

Condemning the police action against the students, she also said that the varsity will file an FIR against the police personnel who entered the campus, attacked students and damaged property while creating mayhem inside.

She termed the police action against the varsity students as “barbaric,” saying it was “totally unacceptable.”

“I have spoken to the HRD minister (Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank) and HRD ministry secretary (Amit Khare,” Akhtar said while addressing a press conference in the university.

Expressing her suppport to the students, Akhtar also asserted that the students of the JMI were not involved in rioting and arson during protest against the amended citizenship law in the area on Sunday.

“I am deeply hurt by seeing the barbaric action against my students,” she earlier said in a video message, assuring the students of her support and that of the entire JMI community “in this difficult time.”

Many of the women students of the JMI university left the university hostel for their home on Monday as the situation in and around the campus remained tensed a day after university virtually turned into a battlefield with police entering the campus and beating students and staff following a violent protest against the amended citizenship law in the area.

Police also lobbed tear gas shells inside the university library where some of the students including women were studying, before barging into the reading room to beat them up and vadalise the premises.

At least 200 students were injured in the violence while several of them were admitted to a hospital in a critical condition for treatment on Sunday evening. Two persons including one student of Jamia, who were allegedly shot by the police during the Sunday protest, were admitted to a hospital for treatment on Monday.

While the students continued their protest against the citizenship law and police crackdown on the second consecutive day in JMI, students and teachers from the Delhi University (DU) and Jawaharlal Nehru University also held protests in solidarity.

“We demand that an independent judicial enquiry be instituted to fully investigate police excesses and to take necessary action. We also demand that FIRs against students be withdrawn and all steps be taken to restore normalcy on campuses,” Federation of Central University Teachers Association (FEDCUTA) said.

The Democratic Teachers Front (DTF) accused the Delhi police and Union home ministry of “orchestrating” violence against the students and faculty members of the JMI, demanding “stringent action” against those involved.

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