Recently an audio clip had surfaced throwing more light on the hooliganism of the SFI in college campuses in Kerala. In a 10-minute audio clip, SFI members could be heard threatening female students for not participating in the ‘Women’s Wall’. The students were part of the Government Arts College in Thiruvananthapuram.
The “Women’s Wall” was a protest event which was planned by the ruling CPM government to protest against those opposing women’s entry into the Sabarimala temple. SFI is the student wing of the party.
As per reports, the threats in the audio clip were issued by Arts College union chairman Sameer. The girls were threatened and verbally abused as they had gone home without the permission of the union leaders. They had even skipped participating in Women’s Wall. The threats were issued in the SFI office inside the college. A portion of the audio clip could be heard here:
A former student has said that if a new student is not ready to participate in the activities of SFI, the students would face such threats until the end of their course.
Manorama Online has reported a few excerpts from the conversation in the audio clip. The SFI member could be heard saying, “With whose permission did you go home? Weren’t you told that there was one programme and we would decide on letting you go after that?”.
Reportedly, the girls were called into their unit rooms for cutting a call and not answering their phones while they had gone home. The SFI members questioned this. They asked, “Why did you cut the phone call? I only asked why you left the campus without permission? I have the authority to ask that. How many times were you told at the committee that you can only leave only after checking with the unit? Why did you leave after checking with the department? Tell me. The department is not bigger than the unit”.
Besides this, the SFI members were also keen on controlling how students use their phones. They said, “Why are you fiddling with the phone at odd times? No one was asked to take selfies, or listen to music or check WhatsApp. As a girl, you were allowed to attend important calls from your home”.
Here is another portion of the audio clip released by Asianet News:
The students who were involved in this incident have not spoken to the media. They’re afraid of facing repercussions as they’re still studying in the college.
A former PG student of the college had also faced the same issue. She had complained to the principal. However, the principal allegedly said something on the lines of “boys would always make comments on girls, there is no need to take this seriously”. The former student had also said that both students and teachers alike were afraid of confronting the SFI members.
The Thiruvananthapuram SFI district unit has now said that they would examine the audio clips before taking further action. However, they have also said that they would have never forced a student to participate in any of its programmes, in any college in Kerala.
The audio clip surfaces after the recent incident of stabbing in the University College by SFI members on Friday. Following the incident, a former student had come out and narrated the hooliganism of the SFI members in the college. The girl was tortured and had even attempted to commit suicide before deciding to leave the college.
The prime accused NN Naseem and R Sivaranjith have been arrested by the Kerala police nearly three days after the incident. Murder charges have been slapped against eight arrested SFI members for planning the attack. Besides these allegations of exam malpractices have also been raised.