A senior warden of a hostel at the Jawaharlal Nehru University on Monday resigned from his post, citing his failure to provide security to students who were attacked by a masked mob the previous evening, the Hindustan Times reported. R Meena, the warden of Sabarmati hostel, said in his resignation letter: “We tried but could not provide security to hostel.”
At least 34 students and teachers were injured and admitted to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences Trauma Centre on Sunday evening. They were discharged on Monday.
Video footage on Sunday night showed a masked mob of around 50 to 60 men and women wielding sticks and rods entering hostel buildings, sparking panic among students. The Delhi Police have registered a first information report in connection with the violence.
Calls for vice chancellor’s removal grow
Meanwhile, the Jawaharlal Nehru University Students’ Union sought the removal of Vice Chancellor Jagadesh Kumar, alleging that he was responsible for the violence at the university. The administration had in a statement on Saturday condemned “any form of violence in the campus”.
The Jawaharlal Nehru University Teachers’ Association wrote to President Ram Nath Kovind mentioning the “urgent need for the removal of professor M Jagadesh Kumar from his position as the vice chancellor”. They wrote: “Yesterday’s unprecedented events at the University have served to highlight once again the extremely grave consequences of delay in heeding to our appeal.”
The Communist Party of India (Marxist) sought the removal of the vice chancellor. “The vice chancellor, who has been instrumental in systematically undermining and dismantling the country’s premier university, had permitted this rampage to go on unchecked for hours,” the party said.
Former JNU Chancellor and Congress leader Karan Singh alleged that Kumar had been “absent” at this crucial juncture and was “completely ineffective”, PTI reported. He urged the Home Ministry to get the matter impartially investigated. “As a former Chancellor of the Jawaharlal Nehru University, I have been shocked beyond belief at the violent and condemnable incidents that took place yesterday,” Singh said.
The Aligarh Muslim University Students Coordination Committee demanded that Kumar resign on moral grounds. It cited reports from the university that said that the mob prevented even medical teams from entering the campus.
Two Union ministers, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar – both alumni of the college – condemned the attack on Sunday night.