A section of Jawaharlal Nehru University students on Sunday alleged that the varsity authorities “prevented” them from taking part in the ‘Mahila Maha Panchayat’ by ramping up security on campus.
The ‘maha panchayat’ was called to express solidarity with the wrestlers protesting at Jantar Mantar against Wrestling Federation of India chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh. There was heavy police deployment on the campus, the students added. No immediate response was available from the police or the university.
The All India Students’ Association (AISA) claimed that an “undeclared Section 144” has been imposed on the campus.
“The Mahila Panchayat was announced on Sunday. Heavy police deployment has been made inside and outside Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) to prevent students from participating in it. The government has deployed its entire machinery to protect sexual violence accused,” said AISA activist Madhurima Kundu said. She also shared a photograph of over half a dozen women police personnel on the campus.
Kundu alleged that she was physically restrained as soon as she stepped outside the main gate.”The female police (personnel) gheraoed me and tried to intimidate me by taking videos from personal phones,” she added.
To protest against the restrictions, scores of students staged a protest at the varsity gate. They also demanded Singh’s arrest. AISA said in a press note, “Protest at JNU gate against undeclared 144 in campus preventing students from joining Mahila Panchayat and against the detention of women wrestlers and women leaders protesting for justice against sexual harasser BJP MP Brij Bhushan Singh.”
The wrestlers, who have been sitting in protest at Delhi’s Jantar Mantar, have demanded the arrest of Singh who, they alleged, sexually harassed several women grapplers.