Historic March of Students and Teachers in Delhi University against ABVP’s Goondaism

Sunand

THOUSANDS of students and teachers marched in the north campus of Delhi University on February 28 against ABVP’s goondaism. This was the biggest mobilisation of students and teachers which DU has seen in decades. The immediate call against the ABVP’s terror tactics to silence all voices critical of the RSS-BJP regime through violent means became a rallying point for a mass mobilisation which was beyond the reach of any organisation. It came a week after the disruption of an academic seminar in Ramjas College by ABVP and later large scale violence on students, teachers and media persons with Delhi police playing the role of facilitator. The call for march was given by student and teachers organisations under the banner of ‘Save DU’. JNUSU and JNUTA had also given a call to join the march. Entire campus resonated with slogans of "DU hamara aap ka, nahi kisi ke baap ka!" (DU is ours and yours, not anyone's father's) and "goondagardi nahi sahenge".

The march which started from Khalsa College culminated in a public meeting in Arts Faculty. Public meeting was addressed by leaders of political parties including Sitaram Yechury, CPI (M); D Raja, CPI; KC Tyagi, JD(U) and Pankaj Pushkar, MLA (Timarpur) apart from the student and teacher activists. Sitaram Yechury, speaking at the public meeting said: "A hundred flowers will blossom here; some black flowers may also bloom, like the ABVP. A hundred flowers will bloom and a thousand thoughts will contend. Join any party you want. We will protect your rights.”

A call for citizen’s march on March 4 from Mandi House to Parliament Street has been given. The attack on DU is latest in a series of attacks on academic institutions where RSS-ABVP in collusion with State machinery is being used to silence all critical voices. In this case too, every attempt was made to reduce the issue to the binary of ‘national vs anti-national’ or that of ‘left vs right’, while in reality it is a struggle between democracy loving forces on one side and the destroyers of democracy on the other.  It goes without saying that every such attempt has seen brave resistance from the student movement. The latest assault too will be resisted by mobilising the widest possible section of university in defence of the campus democracy. 

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