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3 NE CMs face protests at JNU

3 NE CMs face protests at JNU
Arunachal Pradesh CM, Pema Khandu addressing the JNU students amid protest.
NEW DELHI, AUG 29 (AGENCIES) | Publish Date: 8/29/2018 11:42:57 AM IST

Three chief ministers of Bharatiya Janata Party-ruled North East states—Assam, Arunachal Pradesh and Manipur, faced protests and sloganeering from a section of students at the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) campus in New Delhi, Hindi daily Amar Ujala reported.

Assam CM Sarbananda Sonowal, Arunachal CM Pema Khandu and Manipur CM N Biren Singh were invited Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP)- RSS’s students wing, for a public talk.

Despite the protests, the three chief ministers continued to talk on development and national integration.

JNU campus has a tradition of organising public talks by leaders and ministers from all parties and ideologies, especially before university polls, and especially by leaders from Left parties.

DNA reported that “students were protesting outside the venue, with placards, against the Citizenship Amendment Bill.” The report adds, “As he started speaking, Khandu was disrupted by a student who said that several students from North East were not allowed to enter the venue of the Koyna Hostel mess. “All the students from the North East were not allowed to enter here. This is not right,” she said. Her disruptions were followed by cries of ‘Bharat mata ki jai’ by ABVP members.”

Students were protesting outside the venue, with placards, against the Citizenship Amendment Bill. Several students said that they were not allowed to enter by the ABVP. Promises of an interactive session were also rescinded, and eventually only two questions were allowed once the three CMs spoke individually.

In its report, Amar Ujala mentioned that the programme had a normal beginning. However, within a short time, slogans were raised against the ministers and the protest took a heated turn, as students, allegedly those supporting the left, and ABVP, clashed.

The visit of the CMs was part of the campaign for the JNU students’ elections, scheduled to be held on September 14.

AISA and DSF said inviting elected representatives was a “blatant display of power”. “The ABVP-RSS-BJP clearly does not trust its leadership and activists to win a debate in JNU. It has, therefore, resorted to campaigning like it is a state/Lok Sabha election,” said DSF secretary Pratim Ghosal.

Sucheta De, AISA national president, said, “If three CMs are coming to campaign, it talks a lot about the kind of money, mantri power they are engaging in.” However, ABVP JNU president, Vijay Kumar, said there was nothing wrong with what they did. “If the Left and others can call their leaders, why can’t we call three or even 50 chief ministers?”

According to OPINDIA report, while the NSUI, Congress’ student wing, had invited P. Chidambaram for a talk on ‘Myth of development under the Modi regime’ on Tuesday and the SFI had invited CPM’s Sitaram Yechury for a talk last week. JNU is all set to start a special centre dedicated to the studies of the North East.

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