More than 200 students on Friday staged a protest outside the Central Bureau of Investigation headquarters in New Delhi, demanding to know the status of the inquiry into the missing case of Jawaharlal Nehru University student Najeeb Ahmad. The protestors also called for a faster investigation into the case.
The protestors included students from JNU, Delhi University and Jamia Millia Islamia University. Ahmad’s mother, Fatima Nafees, and his cousin also participated in the agitation.
October 15 will mark a year since Ahmad had gone missing from the Mahi Mandavi hostel in JNU after an alleged scuffle with a group of students who were members of the Akhil Bharatiya Vishwa Parishad.
Two platoons of the Central Reserve Police Force and the Indo-Tibetan Border Police were deployed outside the CBI headquarters to avoid any untoward incident. Around 60 police officials were also present at the protest site.
However, minor clashes between the prostestors and the police were reported. Some students even broke the police barricades, but the situation was brought under control after senior officials intervened.
Former JNU Students’ Union President Mohit Pandey said the Delhi Police had deployed water cannons to control the agitation. “Students and activists have decided that they will not go until something concrete comes from the CBI,” Pandey said on Twitter. “The Bharatiya Janata Party government dictates the CBI, we have occupied the CBI. We will not leave the CBI gates.”
Ahmad was initially described by university officials as an accused in the events of the night he went missing. However, later the police had registered a case of abduction and offered a reward for any information on his whereabouts. Following orders from Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, the Delhi Police had also formed a special team to find Ahmad.
In May, the Delhi High Court transferred the case to the CBI. The police have failed to make any major breakthrough since his disappearance, triggering criticism and protests against the authorities.