Violence over Jinnah Portrait at AMU

Casey Dawson
May 7, 2018

In solidarity with Alighar Muslim University (AMU) students, today, AMU Alumni Association of Maharashtra organised a press conference in which they blamed the Yogi government and RSS for this incident. Lyricist and poet Javed Akhtar, too, waded into the controversy by saying that not only Jinnah but also the temples built for Godse must be condemned. "He was the founder member of the University Court in 1920 and also a donor", said AMU spokesperson Shafey Kidwai, adding the renowned jurist and politician had been granted membership before the demand for Pakistan had been raised by the Muslim League.

The portrait of Jinnah has been hanging on a wall in the students union's office at AMU for decades.

On the ongoing Jinnah portrait row, Olympic bronze medallist wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt had said that it is embarrassing to fight for someone who is responsible for dividing the country. The president of the AMU Students Union, Mashkoor Ahmad Usmani, was among those injured. Soon after his request, members of the Hindu Jagran Manch arrived at the university campus demanding the removal of the portrait.

"No one has a place in their heart for nation's enemy, never had, and never will have", Maurya told ANI. We can't wait for them to act on this issue. "It's not but a conspiracy to use Jinnah's portrait by unruly and anti-social elements for displaying gundaism inside the campus". We have assembled here to expose this politics and how right-wing people entered the campus with an intention to disturb the peaceful environment. "You are an Indian today because of them". Several students including AMUSU President Maskoor Usmani, Secretary Mohammad Fahad, and Former Vice President Mazin Zaidi were severely injured in the violence.

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The Chief Minister also sought a detailed report from Aligarh district administration on the issue and assured to look into the matter. Academic activities will remain suspended for the next three days.

Furthermore, the protest has also been joined by the students of Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), Allahabad University and Jamia Millia Islamia.

The students of AMU have warned that if their demands are not met, then they would resort to a countrywide agitation by joining hands with students from other universities.

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