Impasse between Jadavpur University students and WB police: Explained

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Jadhavpur University.
Under Mamata Banerjee's regime in West Bengal, it seems that crime against women is not going to decline. In Jadavpur University, one of State's elite university, a case of molestation was reported by a girl, but the college authority's inaction has forced students to protest against the same which eventually led to arrest of 35 students by the state police.

What is more shocking is that as per reports, those who forced students to end the gherao, there were also a few TMC men who attacked the students.

Why have 35 students been arrested?

  • Students had ‘gheraoed' the Jadavpur University Vice Chancellor and Registrar's office, but the gherao was forcefully lifted in the early hours on Wednesday by a strong contingent of police force.
  • After a scuffle between the police and students around 35 students were arrested.
  • Soon after the ‘gherao' was lifted from the VC and registrar office, the students ‘gheraoed' Jadavpur Police station demanding release of their classmates who had been arrested.

What is Jadavpur University molestation case?

  • It is a case of molestation of a second year History (Hons) student of West Bengal's Jadavpur University (JU).
  • As per reports, the girl was forcefully taken to the boys hostel by a group of 10 male students.
  • She was molested, beaten up and locked down according to the complaint lodged in the local police station.
  • The shameful incident occurred on August 28 evening during a festival organised by the college.
  • As per the girl, some of the boys reportedly belong to the engineering stream, while others from humanities.
  • The girl and her father brought the matter to the cognizance of the university authorities. Seeing lack of response, the girl lodged a formal complaint to the police on September 2.
  • After West Bengal's education minister ordered for an investigation into the matter, police have started a probe under sections 354 (criminal assault on a woman to outrage her modesty) and 379 (theft) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) against the accused. No arrests have been made so far.

Why are the students protesting?

  • The students who are protesting have demanded to set up a fresh probe committee to investigate the alleged molestation on its campus.
  • The students are demanding so because they do not rely on the internal probe being conducted by the college.
  • Students also insisted that the gherao would not be lifted until some assurance was given in the matter to them.

What are the authorities saying?

  • State Education Minister Partha Chatterjee has said that the impasse at Jadavpur University can be solved through discussions and negotiations, not by protesting.
  • Chatterjee also said that students should vent their grievances in a democratic way and not resort to gherao.
  • "If the agitating students want, they can also talk to the government," he said.
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