Saturday, March 4, 2017

Ramjas Violence : A Trap ABVP Fell Into

A lot has been said about student violence at Ramjas College of the University of Delhi. News channels have shown footage of students beating up one another. Exact trigger for violence is not known. Most commentators and observers have blamed rightwing ABVP for initiating the violence. At the same time it is emerging that both sides might have played a role to greater or smaller extent. It has been argued that ABVP alone may not be blamed for all the violence in Delhi University campus? Alternate narratives are emerging about beginning of violence. A picture has surfaced showing  a SFI member assaulting another student. Female members of ABVP have reported physical harassment at the hand of members of opposing camp.

The following are the key points, to which ABVP had reacted :
  • Literary society of Ramjas college had organised the seminar titled "Cultures of Protest". In addition to Umar Khalid other prominent speakers included Arundhati Roy, Sanjay Kak and Bimol Akoijam
  • It is well known that Arundhati Roy is a sympathiser of ultra left. Ms. Roy had written about azadi for Kashmir. Mr. Sanjay Kak had also created films on naxalite movement and azadi for Kashmir. Mr. Bimol Akoijam advocates aspirations of tribal areas. 
  • These are also stated position of CPI Maoist organisation. Mr. Varvara Rao, a maoist idealogogue, had said "Only those princely states that were under Delhi till 1947 and those who agreed to join the Indian Union should be in India." This, in effect advocates balkanisation of India.  
  • When the invitation to Umar Khalid was cancelled, a video  emerged, where students and  faculty members of Ramjas college were seen chanting azadi for Kashmir and Bastar. 
As things unfolded, it became clear that ABVP had lost the plot and came out looking bad. AISA and SFI had played victimhood well and drawn a lot of sympathy. Mainstream media had a field day showing students being beaten up by alleged ABVP members. Couple this with perfectly timed release of video of Gurmehar Kaur claiming "Pakistan did not kill my father, war did". Media had discussed extensively how Gurmehar Kaur had got threat of physical violence including rape. In an election season, strategy of aggravating ABVP had worked like a set piece and hit the bulls eye by smearing the ruling party at the centre. I think ABVP had to evolve a better strategy, preferably a non violent one, to counter azadi narrative of left. Otherwise, it may risk losing student support in near future.



1www.outlookindia.com | Walking With The Comrades - Penn English
2. Arundhati Roy - Kashmir is just the beginning , A New India is rising …

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