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Clashes at Ramjas College after ABVP ruckus over invite to JNU’s Umar Khalid

Image: HT

New Delhi: Clashes erupted between two student groups outside Ramjas College here on Wednesday, a day after the ABVP forced the suspension of an event to be addressed by JNU student Umar Khalid, jailed last year for allegedly shouting anti-national slogans.

Ramjas students had planned a march to the nearby Maurice Nagar Police Station demanding action against the activists of the RSS-affiliated ABVP but were stopped by ABVP activists who surrounded the college.

A large number of policemen and policewomen were deployed at the college but the clashes continued.

“People from the ABVP are not allowing students who had come to attend a protest march to leave the college,” Kawalpreet Kaur, President of the All India Students Association’s (AISA) Delhi University unit, told IANS.

On Tuesday, a large group of Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad students disrupted the first session of a two-day seminar at Ramjas College on Indian tribals — a subject on which Khalid is writing his PhD thesis.

The ABVP, which dominates the students union in Delhi University, raised slogans denouncing Khalid as an “anti-national” and forced the organisers to suspend the day’s event on Tuesday.

Khalid was among the students booked for sedition for allegedly raising anti-national slogans at the JNU on February 9 last year.

“I was on my way to Ramjas College when I was told the event was disrupted by the ABVP. Organisers told me to come from a different route but I still could not make it,” Khalid told IANS on Wednesday.

He said the Wednesday march was not about him but about the “democratic space of the university”.