THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A pall of gloom descended on College of Engineering of Trivandrum (CET) here on Friday morning as the body of 20-year-old student Thansi Basheer was kept in the college for the public to pay homage while, later in the day, the campus turned into a stage for protests and police raids.
Basheer, a fifth semester Civil Engineering student, succumbed to injuries late on Thursday after she was mowed down by an open jeep which had been occupied by several students and was driven to the campus during the Onam celebrations at Men’s Hostel on the campus. The student’ body was taken to Nilambur, her hometown, after a post-mortem held at Medical College Hospital. The funeral will be held on Saturday.
police Raid Men’s Hostel
City Police, under the supervision of Deputy Commissioner Sanjay Kumar Gurudin, raided the Men’s Hostel on Friday afternoon and reportedly found some liquor bottles and hockey sticks. The personnel also raided the room of Baiju, who drove the jeep, and seized his shirt, having bloodstains.
ollowing the raid, the DCP told reporters that the police had found nothing ‘unusual’, other than some hockey sticks. “The investigation is on and we will nab Baiju and team who were allegedly responsible for the death of Basheer. The raid was also part of the investigation. The culprits will land in our custody soon,” he said. Baiju, a seventh semester student, a native of Kannur, is on the run ever since the police began a search for him after the accident.
Student Unions Lock Horns
Youth Congress and KSU activists, on Friday, took out a march to the campus and gheraoed principal J David demanding his resignation, after barging into his office room. They also sought action against the students who carried out the atrocious act. “The principal is afraid of the consequences he would have to face if he takes action against the SFI leaders. So, he is still maintaining silence over the issue and also on allowing the hostel students to drive the jeep inside the campus. The students in the jeep were in an inebriated state. They were SFI activists and the jeep was in the possession of the SFI students, who passed it on to the subsequent batches, over the years. The vehicle is registered in the name of one Sreeraj, a former student and SFI unit member who passed out in the year 2014. Moreover, the accused person who drove the jeep is still absconding. Hence, we are demanding the arrest of the culprits and raiding the college hostel. The hostel is notorious for anti-social elements under the aegis of SFI,” Vimal Kumar, Youth Congress leader, told ‘City Express’.
Meanwhile, SFI activists refuted the allegations levelled by KSU-Youth Congress leaders, terming them as an attempt to politicise the incident for their narrow interests. “SFI has no role in this issue and all the students who were in the jeep are neither SFI members nor supporters of SFI. The jeep is not in the name of any SFI student and allegations to this effect are absolutely false,” said Pradin, SFI state vice president.
The SFI also lashed out at KSU, saying that it was trying to put the blame on the Left students’ organisation. “Two years ago, KSU activists had driven a JCB inside the campus and no one was speaking about the issue, when they were leading the college union. We are not justifying the latest incident and the culprits should be taken into custody. But SFI had no role here and we are absolutely innocent,” Pradin added.