NEW DELHI: Students of Delhi’s Jamia Millia Islamia university shared their memories of December 15, 2019, at an event to mark two years since police entered the campus and used batons and tear-gas shells to disperse students protesting against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA).
The Jamia unit of the All India Students Association (AISA) organised the event on Wednesday at the Press Club of India. It comprised a photo exhibition—‘Documenting Representation and Resilience through the Lens’—and panel discussions on ‘Testimonies: Bearing Witness’ and ‘Incarceration and Resistance: Forging Broader Solidarities’. Author Arundhati Roy was the guest of honour.
The photos at the exhibition were taken by two Jamia students who were eyewitnesses of the attack—Mohammad Haris and Mohammad Meherban. Chaired by author and activist Farah Naqvi, the panel included Fawaz Shaheen from the Quill Foundation, Radhika Chitkara from People’s Union for Democratic Rights (PUDR) and two former Jamia students—Akhtarista Ansari and Anugya Thakur.
Chitkara and Shaheen talked about their fact-finding reports on alleged police brutality at Jamia and Aligarh Muslim University (AMU), respectively. “PUDR demanded an FIR against Delhi Police, and an inquiry into excessive use of force and wanton acts of destruction by the police. Two years later, where is the FIR? Where is justice?” asked Chitkara. Citing the PUDR report, she said the police “obstructed and denied medical care to dozens of injured and unlawfully detained students, and denied them legal aid”.
Ansari, one of the five women seen trying to protect a friend who was being beaten by the police in a viral video, also shared her experience. Hailing from Jharkhand, she was a final-year student of sociology then. “We can never forget the way we were beaten and called Pakistanis and terrorists. The attack took place not because we were protesting, but because a large number of Muslims had gathered to voice their opinions against the state,” she said.
NAAC rating a result of team effort: Jamia VC
Jamia Millia Islamia vice-chancellor Najma Akhtar said on Wednesday, December 15, 2021, that the A++ ranking in the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) review was a result of the team effort and despite the Covid pandemic, the university was prepared for the assessment.