On January 4, leftist goons and student leaders had barged into the JNU’s Communication and Information Services (CIS), in order to stop the ongoing registration process for the winter semester. The JNU administration had earlier stated that the student groups who had opposed to the registration process had also physically stopped non-protesting students from going to their respective schools of study to continue academic activities.
Speaking to India Today’s Rahul Kanwal, VC Mamidala had shown the server room that was deliberately damaged by leftists who wanted to halt the registration process. It is notable here that the January 5 violence was triggered only after the leftists damaged the servers and stopped thousands of students from finishing the registration process.
JNU VC @mamidala90 took me to the server room which was vandalised by students who were protesting against Uni’s hostel fee hike. There’s no condoning Sunday’s violence, but forcibly stopping students from registering for the winter session is plain wrong. Let students study. pic.twitter.com/f7IJgeY4Bh
— Rahul Kanwal (@rahulkanwal) January 8, 2020
The JNU administration, after the Sunday violence had released an official statement, explaining how thousands of students interested to pursue studies and those who are not participating in the current agitation against fee hike, are being stopped by the agitators.
A glimpse of how common students are being harassed at JNU was also shared by Vikas Singh Gautam, a JNU student, on social media. “I took admission into JNU thinking that, I’ll get to be in an environment of debate and discussion. But I’ve got to see a totally different culture here. People here don’t know anything better than imposing their views on you. I’ll rather call it a culture of violence now.”
I took admission into JNU thinking that , I’ll get to be in an environment of debate and discussion. But I’ve got to see a totally different culture here. People here don’t know anything better than imposing their views on you. I’ll rather call it a culture of violence now.
— Vikas Singh Gautam (@vikasgautamjnu) January 9, 2020
Gautam said, “I am being boycotted from all social, hostel and academic groups of JNU’s Centre For Philosophy by the left. This political untouchability is being practised against me because I tried to register for this academic session. This just one example of subjugation of Dalits by the left.”
This is not just a student’s agony. There are many common students who want to study. Left-wing students are harassing these students and preventing them from registering themselves for the new semester. They are being abused and discriminated against, in hostels and mess. Any student who is not included in the agenda of the Left or is not supporting them, they are being pressurized psychologically. While talking to OpIndia, many other students concurred.
One such student, Alok Jha, who is doing research there, told Opindia about the rapidly changing environment there.
Alok Jha said, “I used to think about the struggles of the Left and was under the impression that they always up for struggle, always stick to the interests of the students. Regrettably, I never saw any result of the struggle of these people. Whatever the issue, commotion, publicity and politics were the main agenda. Be it the issue of seat cut, the issue of AC reading room or the issue of the fee increase, every time these people came to the media and gathered their publicity and ended the protest or they are only busy with spoiling the system. Some of our friends used to say, they do nothing except pretence in the name of the movement, I never believed them. But today I have seen all the pretence of these leftists, how they fool the common student. And use them for their political and ideological ambitions.”
On how the students were being tortured while pressurizing them, Opindia talked to many more common students there. Many people talked about the terror of the leftist students and the discrimination they are being forced through but refused to mention their names, “There are many more years to study here, these people will not allow us to live here peacefully. We are being persecuted in the mess, even many professors from the leftist ideology are taunting us, making fun of us. Left-wing students have been selectively targeting students who are suspected of being supporters of ABVP or who want to study here by not supporting their movement or protest.”
Alok Jha said that he was not afraid of anyone as he is telling the truth. Leftist students are harassing him and many other students like him. He told us, “I live in Sabarmati Hostel. There was a WhatsApp group of all the residents of the hostel. Through which students got information related to hostels. All the residents were in this group. After the incident of January 5, I have seen leftists trying to instigate common students against each other. Left-wing students are selectively targeting students who either want to study, who are not with anyone, who is registered or want to get it done. Or leftist students suspect that these students sympathize with ABVP.”
When OpIndia wanted to know from Alok Jha why he was expelled from the hostel group, he said, “I do not belong to any particular party. Yes, there is definitely sympathy for ABVP. Because in my view the Vidyarthi Parishad is a party that has faith in God. I am a believer, I strongly believe in God. From this point of view, the ideology of Vidyarthi Parishad matches my view. Therefore, you can call us sympathetic to them. But I never posted any support for ABVP. Never argued in the mess in favour of ABVP. Did not attend ABVP rallies. My journey was limited from hostel to library and hostel to centre. At the time, the atmosphere of fear in the hostel should have been pacified. At that time these people are doing such gimmick that the students fight among themselves and the atmosphere of fear increases so that these people gather publicity on the strength of this violence. ”
He also sent a number of screenshots to Opindia, “You see this screenshot to see how more common students like me are being told that they are ‘ABVP Goons’, take them out. I will not go to Naxalites and goons because allegations in politics are repeated. But what do you want by marking common students, brother? All leave JNU and turn JNU into Kerala?”
Many such students while talking to OpIndia told us that the leftist students here have no desire to find a solution. As soon as the solution of the problem comes closer, they start creating new problems and start politicizing it. And this goes on for years. And it’s common poor students here who have no political ambitions, who only want to study, that fall prey to these machinations.
A student from a farmer family, with a weak financial background, said, “Here, ideology is imposed on people, there is nothing left of healthy debate. Everyone is pressurized to make the left view their own idea. If you stay away from them, then the leftist students and many leftist professors here will make it difficult for you to stay here. ”
Normal students of JNU also said that the imposition of an idea in any educational institution is wrong, it is not democratic anywhere. And leftists only present their views and domination as if it were a democracy here. Many say that as the leftist ideological hold is losing power all over the world, many leaders see JNU as one of the last strongholds, and they want to make it a leftist fortress.
Alok Jha clearly said that many common students say that as long as JNU exists, there are students studying here, then this dream of the leftists is not going to be fulfilled. He also appealed, “Oh brother of the left, if you had a positive thought, you would have talked about the solution. By doing this, by harassing the students, creating misconceptions among them, and treating them with untouchability, you have done well. Common students once again saw the dual character of the Left.”
Jawaharlal Nehru University Vice Chancellor M. Jagadesh Kumar: I would like to ask all those great personalities coming to support agitators, what about thousands of students&teachers who are deprived of their rights of doing research and teaching? Why can’t you stand with them? pic.twitter.com/aQcV1l7c7r
— ANI (@ANI) January 8, 2020
The Vice-Chancellor also highlighted the rights of oppressed students. He said, ” I would like to ask all those great personalities coming to support agitators, what about thousands of students&teachers who are deprived of their rights of doing research and teaching? Why can’t you stand with them?”
MJ Kumar, Vice-Chancellor, JNU: Today after making JNU communication&info systems functional, number of students who have paid fees for winter semester registration rose to 3552. Registration date extended to 12 Jan. University will help every JNU student who wants to register. pic.twitter.com/BI5hrxwqQV
— ANI (@ANI) January 7, 2020
On January 7, VC Kumar had informed that on the day after the servers were repaired and made functional, a total of 3552 students had paid their fees and registered for the winter semester. The university has now extended the final date for registration to 12 January. The numbers only show how many students want to stay away from pointless agitations and want to continue their studies.