Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) vice-chancellor M Jagadesh Kumar on Saturday blamed outsiders for last Sunday’s violence inside the campus when a masked mob assaulted and injured many students and teachers.
Jagadesh Kumar’s comments a day after Delhi Police said nine students, including JNU students’ union president Aishe Ghosh and several students from Left-wing groups, were behind the January 5 violence. Aishe Ghosh was one of those injured in the attack.
“This is a problem that many illegal students are staying in hostels. They could be outsiders. They may be participating in any possible violence because they have nothing to do with the university,” Jagadesh Kumar was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
“The terror created by some of the activist students went to such an extent that many of our students had to leave the hostels. From the past several days, we have enhanced security in the campus to make sure that innocent students are not hurt,” he said while interacting with students.
Ghosh, Chunchun Kumar, Pankaj Mishra, Vaskar Vijay Mech, Sucheta Talukdar, Priya Ranjan, Vikas Patel, Yogendra Bhardwaj, and Dolan Samanta are the suspects, whose photos—mostly from cellphone video grabs of the violence—and names were released by the police.
Officials have said they will ask them to join the investigation for their involvement in different incidents of campus violence on Friday, Saturday and Sunday last week.
The police version of the events, which is different from the prevailing narrative of the RSS-affiliated Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad or ABVP being responsible for the violence of Sunday evening, was immediately contested by JNUSU.
Joy Tirkey, head of the police’s special investigation team (SIT) probing the violence, said the students involved in the violence were from the Students Front of India (SFI), All India Students Federation (AISF), All India Students Association (AISA), and Democratic Students Federation (DSF).
Tirkey did not name Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad or any suspect from the right-wing party, which has been accused of perpetrating the violence on Sunday evening.
JNUSU’s general secretary, Satish Yadav, denied the police’s allegations.
“Police are trying to give a new turn to the case by naming all Left organisations in their distorted investigation. The members of Left organisations were beaten up by the ABVP,” Yadav said.
“Police did not even use the words ABVP in the briefing. It’s a politically motivated investigation and the briefing was held to name JNUSU members,” he added.