The Students’ Federation of India (SFI) of Presidency University in Kolkata has sought permission from the varsity authorities to screen the controversial BBC documentary on Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the 2002 Gujarat riots on January 27 at 4pm.
This comes even as several students, who gathered at the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) students’ union office in New Delhi for a screening of the documentary ‘India: The Modi Question’ on Tuesday, claimed the varsity administration cut power and internet to stop the event, and staged a protest after stones were thrown on them. In Hyderabad, a students’ group at the University of Hyderabad has organized the screening on its campus without a prior notice or permission, prompting the university authorities to seek a report on the event for taking necessary action.
The SFI at the Presidency University said it has sent an email to the university authorities to book the badminton court on the campus where the documentary is likely to be shown on a giant screen. The university authorities are yet to respond to the request.
The BBC documentary was also screened across Kerala on Tuesday by various political organizations including the pro-Left SFI, as the BJP youth wing went up in arms protesting against the screening. It was screened in several parts of the state, prompting protest marches by the BJP’s Yuva Morcha against the same. Tensions prevailed in some areas of Kerala including the state capital where police had to use water cannons and tear gas to disperse Yuva Morcha protestors. Yuva Morcha activists also gathered at Poojappura in Thiruvananthapuram where the documentary was screened. More screenings took place in some colleges in Ernakulam and Thiruvananthapuram on Tuesday evening. However, support came in for the BJP from unexpected quarters as senior Congress leader and former Kerala CM AK Antony’s son, Anil, voiced displeasure against the documentary.
Delhi Police starts inquiry into complaint of stone pelting
Hours after students of the JNU marched a protest to Vasant Kunj Police station and filed a complaint of a deliberate power outage and stone pelting barring them to screen the BBC documentary, Delhi Police on Wednesday said that they have started the probe.
“No FIR has been filed yet. They (the students) have given a complaint and we are inquiring into it,” Delhi Police officials told news agency ANI.
(With inputs from agencies)