Pune : Twelve students of Savitribai Phule Pune University (SPPU) were arrested in connection with clashes erupted over putting posters regarding Ramjas College controversy on Saturday. Seven activists of RSS affiliated Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) and five of left-leaning Students Federation of India (SFI), were arrested for beating each other.
Nasir Shaikah of SFI said, “To express solidarity with Ramjas College in Delhi among other issues, we have planned protest rally on February 27. We have permission to hold the rally by police and University administration. We were putting posters in the canteen area and also explaining students about the event and Ramjas College issue on Friday night. At that time, ABVP activists of the university and from outside came and started beating five of us with rods and sticks. We got injured.”
SFI students also planned protest against Vinod Tawade, the education minister, for threatening Polytechnic students of Solapur to shut down the college and MLA Prashant Parichara’s abusive remark against Army wives.
Delhi University’s Ramjas College recently witnessed face off between activists of ABVP and another left-leaning All India Students’ Association. The latter invited Umar Khalid, JNU student who was charged with sedition last year, for the program ‘Culture of Protest’. ABVP students had beaten up students of AISA and even a few journalists.
However, ABVP has denied the charges. Pradip Gawade, secretary of ABVP, Pune said, “We had organised protest rally against AISA of Ramjas College for inviting Umar Khalid. We also burnt effigies of Khalid. That is when SFI members started to abuse us saying ABVP Murdabad, they tore down posters and beat us.”
According to sources, posters put by both the groups have content criticising each other.
Dayanand Dose, police inspector, Chatushringi Police Station, Pune, said, “both the groups have lodged FIR against each other and based on these complaints we have arrested seven members of ABVP and five of SFI. Nasir Shaikh, Sandip Marbhal, Satish Gore, Satish Padalekar and Satish Debale of SFI group and Ram Satpute, Rahul Chandel, Karan Shinde, Rushikesh Sargar, Kunal Sapkale, Awadhut Patki, Shardul Bhegale of ABVP are arrested.”
Meanwhile, V N Gade, vice chancellor, SPPU, said, “We have constituted three members committee that will investigate the matter. Students who would be found guilty would be punished. Incident of students beating each other is serious issue and unfortunate. I appeal all students to respect views and ideas of each other like described in our constitution. We are going increase the security and have asked the state government on the background of upcoming University elections to be held in May-June.”