NEW DELHI: In an embarrassment for the Yogi Adityanath government on the deteriorating law and order situation in Uttar Pradesh, a magisterial probe has suggested police and Local Intelligence Unit (LIU) lapses for the violence that took place on May 2 last year at Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) over the removal of Muhammad Ali Jinnah’s portrait from Students’ Union Hall.
Incidentally, the report has also given a clean-chit to Hindu right-wing groups who allegedly entered the campus with weapons through the iconic Bab-E-Syed entrance in a bid to attack former Vice-President Hamid Ansari on the campus.
Additional District Magistrate, finance, Uday Singh, who conducted the probe told Newsclick, that "The report which I have submitted to the district administration last month suggested lapses on the part of the then Station House Officer (SHO) of Civil Lines police station, who could not stop the Hindu right-wing forces entering the university campus. The police could have easily stopped them and the violence would not have taken place. The LIU should have informed the district administration. It miserably failed, leading to the violence."
When asked if Right-wing groups had planned to attack Ansari, Singh said: "No, this is not true. We did not find any such happening in our probe. However, when the scuffle took place between university students and (Right wing) activists, the police detained the protesters and took them to the Civil Lines police station but later they (police) released them and they again entered the campus.”
Read More | AMU Students Beaten Up for Hanging Jinnah's Portrait in Student's Union Hall
The controversy around Jinnah’s poster arose after the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP from Aligarh, Satish Gautam, wrote a letter to AMU’s Vice-Chancellor Tariq Mansoor, seeking an explanation for his portrait hung in the Students’ Union Office. Following this, activists of the Hindu Jagran Manch (HJM), Hindu Yuva Vahini (HYV), Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) and some other Hindu outfits clashed with AMU students wherein several students, including the students' union president and vice president, were severely injured.
Speaking with Newsclick, former AMUSU president Maskoor Ahmad Usmani said, "This report is a mere formality. It is crystal clear in the video footage that a few goons of the HJM were waving the weapons in front of the university’s main gate and administrative block from where the administration handed them over to the police. Why then were they released and re-entered the university? Why has this not been discussed in this report submitted by the ADM?”
Usmani blamed the “complete failure” of the government and district administration who knew that Hamid Ansari was coming to university and it was a grand event. “How did the police security allow them enter the university premises? Students were beaten mercilessly by the police, several students were severely injured and were admitted in the medical college. Who is responsible for that lathi-charge?”, he said, adding that the Yogi government should apologise to the students as his administration was itself accepting the failure of police and local intelligence.
Sharjeel Usmani, a student of B.A final year in AMU, termed the report as “vague”. “It says the police was at fault by letting the Right-wing goons go, while they also give a clean chit to them. The second problem with the report is that it does not acknowledge the planning with which the members of the Right-wing organisations carried out their effort to attack the former vice-president,” he said.
Pointing out the series of incidents in Muslim majority areas of Aligarh at that time, where Right-wingers tried evoking violence on communal lines, Usmanis said: “If the report admits that the police and intelligence agencies were at fault, will they not specify on whose orders were the innocent AMU students brutally attacked?”