JNU students stopped by police from marching towards Rashtrapati Bhavan; detained
Another group of students started sprinting towards India Gate, but were again pushed back, detained and put in buses and autorickshaws.
New Delhi: JNU students protesting against the violence on the university campus tried to march towards the Rashtrapati Bhavan on Thursday after a failed meeting with HRD ministry officials, but were stopped and later detained by police, with some of them receiving injuries as they were roughed up when the cops put them in buses and autorickshaws. A student of Ambedkar University, Shivang, was injured when the police started pushing the protesters. His head was bandaged in an ambulance stationed near the Le Meridien hotel, while a few women protesters said they suffered a panic attack during the police action.
Former JNU Students' Union (JNUSU) vice president Sarika Chaudhary said she was thrashed by the police when they were detaining the protesters. "My spectacles were broken. I lost my slippers and was also injured. I was detained and taken to the Mandir Marg police station," she said. The scene unfolded with JNUSU president Aishe Ghosh giving a call for a march towards the President of India's residence when the meeting between a delegation of students and teachers and the HRD ministry officials did not turn out to be satisfactory.
The delegation, which met the HRD ministry officials, demanded removal of Vice Chancellor M Jagadesh Kumar from his post. Soon after the meeting, as Ghosh gave the call for the march, some students were headed towards the Le Meridien hotel on Janpath Road, while others started running towards India Gate. Police in riot gear resorted to mild force to control the mob that tried to block the traffic on Janpath Road. Using loudspeakers, the police appealed to the crowd to maintain peace.
On being pushed back by the police, the protesters marching towards Le Meridien too started running towards India Gate amid the moving traffic. The police followed them and after some pushing and jostling, managed to contain them on a footpath near the National Archives of India bus stand. After some time, another group of students started sprinting towards India Gate, but were again pushed back, detained and put in buses and autorickshaws.
An autorickshaw driver drew the policemen's ire when he refused to listen to their direction to stop. The police even slapped a student and hit him with a stick as he resisted them. The detained students were taken to the Mandir Marg police station. Meanwhile, several students, including JNSU vice-president Saket Moon, gathered outside Rajiv Chowk metro station's gate number 7 and raised slogans against the Delhi Police.
While the police announced that they had arranged for buses for the students to return to the university campus, the protesters refused the offer and said they would take public transport instead. Security was also strengthened on the road leading towards the Rashtrapati Bhavan, with barricades erected and water cannons stationed there.
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