The protests by Pondicherry University students is a part of the nationwide protests organised by students of various educational institutions.

news Protest Monday, December 16, 2019 - 16:43

As a part of the protests by students in educational institutions across India, the students of Pondicherry University also joined hands, expressing support to the students of Jamia Millia Islamia University (JMI, New Delhi) and Aligarh Muslim University (AMU, Uttar Pradesh). The police entered these two campuses on Sunday night, and injured several students in the clashes that followed.

Loud cheers of ‘Azadi, Azadi’ and ‘Halla bol, Halla bol’ rang through the air in Pondicherry University campus, right in front of the Indian Bank branch on Monday morning. Hundreds of students took out a march, chanting slogans in support of the students of JMI and AMU. They also raised slogans against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 which was recently passed by the Parliament and received President’s assent.

The Students’ Council of Pondicherry University had called for the students to boycott classes on Monday. In a circular released by the council, it said, “The PU Students’ council urges all the students of Pondicherry University to boycott classes on Monday, 16.12.2019. The council extends solidarity to the students of JMI and AMU who are fighting unconstitutional moves by the government of India.”

In response to the Students’ Council circular, the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) chapter in Pondicherry University expressed its strict condemnation to the Council’s call to boycott classes.

In a series of tweets, ABVP-PU’s Social Media Incharge Midhun K Mohandas urged the University’s administration to take strict action against the Council. “ABVP PU condemn the act of Student Council of Pondicherry university requesting student community of PU to boycott classes today in the name of CAB,student council is misusing official whatsapp account for this. Administration please stop this before it burns PU,” read a tweet.

He further stated that the ABVP demands stern disciplinary action against the students ‘who are trying to destroy the peace in campus by violence in the name of CAB’. Accusing the ‘SFI-led Students’ Council of supporting ‘Muslim extremists’ who are trying to destroy peace within the campus, Midhun also said that Pondicherry University need not be made another Jamia Millia. The ABVP leader though had no explanation on who he was branding as extremists.

On Sunday, the students of JMI staged protests in and around the university campus against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019. But, the protests turned violent after protesters- outsiders on the campus- clashed with the police personnel deployed in the area, who resorted to lathicharge and firing teargas shells. Several students and some police personnel were injured in the clashes and the police also detained around 50 students from JMI. The students were released from the police stations on Monday morning.

Subsequently, students of AMU also protested in solidarity with the students of JMI on Sunday evening, which resulted in clashes between the students and the police. Around 60 students were injured in the clashes and the university administration announced that AMU will be closed till January 5, 2020.