Fascist strike by BJP on students: Mamata on JNU

Police personnel guard as students and media are also seen at the main gate of the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), in New Delhi, Monday, Jan. 6, 2020. A group of masked men and women armed with sticks, rods and acid allegedly unleashed violence on the

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday termed the attack on students and teachers at Delhi's Jawaharlal Nehru University as a "fascist surgical strike" by the BJP, evoking sharp reactions from the saffron party, which said she should stop shedding "crocodile tears".

Banerjee, who is also the TMC boss, said she had begun her political career as a student leader but never before witnessed such "brazen attack" on educational institutes.

"Whatever is happening across the country is very disturbing... I, too, was involved in student politics at one point in time, but never have I witnessed this sort of an attack on students and educational institutions...

"It was a planted attack on democracy. Yesterday's was a fascist surgical strike on the student community," Banerjee told reporters, before leaving for her three-day trip to Gangasagar.

Whoever raised voice against the BJP was dubbed "anti national" or a Pakistani", she claimed.

"India is a democracy and we have our right to protest. Anyone who speaks against them is branded an enemy of the state. In a democracy, how can someone be branded anti- national or Pakistani for his or her protest against the government," Banerjee questioned.

The Delhi Police is not under Arvind Kejriwal dispensation, it is under the central government, she said.

"On one hand, they (BJP) have sent goons, and, on the other, they have asked the police to not to take any action. What could police do if they are asked by their higher ups to stay put?" she said.

On Sunday, too, the CM had condemned the violence on JNU campus, terming it a "heinous act".

A four-member Trinamool Congress (TMC) delegation is visiting JNU on Monday to express solidarity with the students and teachers, she said.

Reacting to Banerjee's comment, West Bengal BJP president Dilip Ghosh said, "Banerjee should stop shedding crocodile tears for the students of JNU."

"Where was she when Union minister Babul Supriyo was heckled on Jadavpur University campus on September 19 (last year)? Just to score some political points, she is sending a delegation. Why didn't she send a delegation to those colleges which were ransacked by TMCP activists over the past eight years," he questioned.

Violence broke out at JNU on Sunday night as masked men armed with sticks and rods attacked students and teachers and damaged properties on the campus, prompting the administration to call in the police.

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