August 06, 2015

India: JNU students snub ABVP, screen riot film

The Times of India

JNU students snub ABVP, screen riot film

TNN | Aug 6, 2015, 02.40 AM IST

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NEW DELHI: Jawaharlal Nehru University students don't let a thing like the administration's refusal to get in the way of a film screening. Despite a gag order, members of Democratic Students' Federation (DSF) arranged for the screening of the documentary film Muzaffarnagar Abhi Baki Hai by putting together their own resources.

The screening had been scheduled for 11pm at the Godavari hostel dhaba. But the film ended well after 2am on Wednesday.

"We brought our own speakers, our own lights and laptop," said DSF's V Lenin Kumar. Instead of a screen, they used a white bed sheet borrowed from a hostel. In a statement issued later, the students' organization said, "The screening was organized to protest against ABVP's (Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad) disruption of the screening organized in Kirori Mal College (KMC). The successful screening is a fitting rebuff to the communal...ABVP, who had been campaigning against the screening here as well."

The administration wasn't having it, as vice-chancellor S K Sopory told TOI, "no permission had been taken from anybody" and, apparently, the posters announcing the screening did not have the names of any JNU students on them.

Although Kumar conceded they hadn't filled any form, he argued this wasn't the first activity to have been organized without permission at the Godavari dhaba .

He said nearly 200 students turned up for the screening. When it was stopped, everyone protested. The police also arrived at 1pm but the matter failed to escalate. "They might take action later," Kumar said.

KMC, however, will deal with this issue after the DUSU elections are over. Principal Dinesh Khattar was supposed to have viewed the film and cleared it—or not—but he said the college is "not picking up the issue now at all. What happened on Saturday was very sad