KOLKATA: A mere film screening led to havoc at Jadavpur University on Friday night with FIRs being filed against ABVP activists, and one being arrested on Saturday, for allegedly molesting women students.
West Bengal Governor Kesari Nath Tripathi on Saturday remarked: “Jadavpur University was a centre of excellence but now has turned into a centre for indiscipline.” As Chancellor of the university, he sought a report from Vice Chancellor Suranjan Das.
However, the VC asked the police for an explanation as an FIR was lodged by the JU authorities. “We want to know the future of the FIR. Not only students but we have also lodged an FIR. We want an explanation from the police. We will take steps to ensure peace within the university and I will submit a report to the chancellor,” he said on Saturday.
JU students took out a protest in the evening against the “trespassing by outsiders” and shouted slogans against the ABVP, and for “azaadi” (freedom). Teachers and non-teaching staff of the varsity joined the protest march up to the police station and then to garner support from city residents.
An ABVP delegation too met the Governor and stated: “Anti-national activities have been going on within JU. We will not tolerate it and will take steps. There are some Naxalite students supported by some professors. We will send a report to the Union Home Ministry and ensure official steps against such anti-nationals.”
The trouble started after the ABVP which screened the movie Buddha in a Traffic Jam, without permission, in the presence of film director Vivek Agnihotri at a ground on campus after permission earlier granted to screen it inside an auditorium was denied late Friday evening. There were loud protests by JU students who alleged that the movie promoted “Brahminism and Hindtuva”.
The Left-wing students’ union FETSU and other groups screened a documentary Muzaffarnagar baaki haay. After the screenings there were allegations that women students had been molested by some ABVP members who were not varsity students. The students confined four ABVP members, including a lecturer of Rajabazar Science College.
Tension prevailed as Das rushed to the campus at 11 pm. The situation worsened as BJP state women’s wing president Roopa Ganguly reached the campus and hundreds of BJP workers too arrived.
Ganguly, who was on a live television show but rushed there remarked: “I learnt that our boys were being held, beaten up inside the campus and hence came here to rescue them.”
The police reached at midnight and Das succeeded in convincing the JU students to release the ABVP members who left the campus while Ganguly was agitating outside.
The ABVP immediately took out a procession in protest and lodged an FIR at Jadavpur police station.