Oppn demands judicial inquiry on police action in Jamia

Oppn demands judicial inquiry on police action in Jamia

A placard lies on a table inside a partially damaged library of the Jamia Millia Islamia university after police entered the university campus on the previous day, following a protest against a new citizenship law. Reuters

Opposition on Monday demanded a judicial inquiry led by a Supreme Court judge into the police action in Jamia Millia University where students were targeted inside library and wash-rooms following protests on the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act, saying it is completely unacceptable.

Leaders also have sought time from President Ram Nath Kovind to apprise him about their opposition to the CAA and the police action against the students. Sources said they are expecting a meeting on Tuesday.

Senior leaders in Opposition who were present in Delhi held consultations over phone before they held a joint press conference where they unequivocally condemned the police, which lobbed tear gas shells into library and beat up students inside wash-rooms.

Senior Congress leaders Ghulam Nabi Azad and Kapil Sibal, CPI(M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury, his CPI counterpart D Raja, LJD patriarch Sharad Yadav, RJD's Manoj K Jha and Samajwadi Party's Javed Ali Khan at the press conference.

Follow the anti-Citizenship Act protests live

"Police never entered campuses without the permission of Vice Chancellor or Registrar. The Jamia VC said he has not called police. Then under whose instructions Delhi Police, which is under the Narendra Modi government, entered the campus. We demand a judicial enquiry," Azad said adding the Modi government is bringing "divisive" laws one by one to distract from economic slowdown, he said.

Yechury said what has happened in Jamia was unacceptable. "This is not acceptable in democracy. This is not a Hindu-Muslim issue. It is a direct affront to the Constitution. Delhi Police will have to make it clear who ordered their entry into campus," he said.

He said whoever gave the orders should be brought to book. "Home Minister Amit Shah is directly in charge. We haven't seen in last two days. Turmoil in Central universities in Delhi is because of using force. Destroying higher education sector in India is their (BJP-RSS) ideological project," he said.

Raja was of the view that a "civil war-like situation" and Modi and Shah are responsible for such a situation. There is fear across the country, he added.

While Jha condemned Modi's comments that rioters could be identified by what they wear, Khan demanded an inquiry by a Supreme Court Judge.

Yadav said either the government will stay or the Act will stay and they would be working towards that.

On Modi's comments that Congress was behind the violence, Azad said if his party had that kind of influence, BJP would not have been in power.

Azad also countered the Prime Minister's comment that the Act was passed by overwhelming majority, saying it was a close call in Rajya Sabha and regional parties were being pressurised to support the government.

"We have been seeing this (pressurising regional parties) for the past six years," he said.

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