Skip to main content
xYOU DESERVE INDEPENDENT, CRITICAL MEDIA. We want readers like you. Support independent critical media.

FTII Alumni Supports Students After Hindutva Attack, Slams Police Inaction

Students were assaulted by outsiders who entered the FTII campus and burned a banner on the Babri Masjid demolition.

File Photo

Delhi: Noted alums of the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) in Pune have strongly condemned the violence against students on campus by right-wing groups on January 23.

A day after the Ram Mandir consecration event, members of Hindutva groups entered the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) campus and attacked students over a banner condemning the Babri Masjid demolition as unconstitutional. The banner was set on fire by the members of the Hindu right-wing groups, according to both the students and the police. 

A statement signed by 207 alums of the reputed institute slammed the police for its inaction saying, "FTII students had organised discussions and screenings on their campus as part of their academic commitment. That intruders were allowed to attack the students is inexcusable. The inaction of the police in investigating and taking action against those responsible for the violence - clearly recorded on video - is even more inexcusable."

"It is painful to see the students of this great film school being assaulted with impunity," they said, while asking for prompt action against the accused.

According to students, there were more than a dozen people who entered the campus and pulled down the banner while shouting "Jai Shri Ram".

Police were deployed heavily after the incident, and an FIR was filed against 12-15 individuals. The police are investigating and considering charges of unlawful assembly, rioting, and criminal intimidation. 

The police also told the Indian Express that the accused belonged to different right-wing groups and they were trying to identify these persons.

However, the FTII Students' Association, in a statement on Wednesday, alleged that the FIR failed to register the gravity of the assault on students. Expressing concern over the reportage of the event and portrayal of the incident by Hindutva organisations, the Association said, "Students have not attacked anyone. We were only defending ourselves."

The Association, on the day of the incident, also alleged police inaction during the attack and said the culprits were let go from the campus. It said the attackers also vandalised installations and FTII property at the Wisdom Tree on campus. 

Further, a police officer told the Indian Express that the police have been given a complaint application against the FTII students for putting up the banner and allegedly assaulting the group that had entered the premises. The allegations are under probe. 

The incident followed an event on January 22 when Anand Patwardhan's documentary on Babri masjid demolition - 'Ram ke Naam' -was screened by the students at the institute. 

Get the latest reports & analysis with people's perspective on Protests, movements & deep analytical videos, discussions of the current affairs in your Telegram app. Subscribe to NewsClick's Telegram channel & get Real-Time updates on stories, as they get published on our website.

Subscribe Newsclick On Telegram