Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) activists interrupted a Women's Day event outside Delhi University's arts faculty on Monday evening where one of the speakers was labour activist Nodeep Kaur, who was recently released from Karnal jail after her arrest and alleged custodial torture.
Nodeep, a Dalit woman who was also part of the farmers' protest, was granted bail on February 26 after 44 days in Haryana's Karnal jail.
Nodeep was charged with an attempt to murder at a protest against irregular wages in January. She also claimed she was physically assaulted in police and judicial custody after her arrest in January.
Even before Nodeep could start her address, ABVP supporters allegedly stopped the event asking whether the organisers had valid permission to organise such an event.
The Bhagat Singh Chatra Ekta Manch (BSCEM) alleged, in a statement, that the ABVP members "tore the posters at the site and attacked the students", while the Delhi Police remained "mute spectators".
The women's day event, on March 8, was organised by the Bhagat Singh Chhatra Ekta Manch, a far-Left student group headed by Nodeep's sister Rajveer Kaur, a PhD scholar at Delhi University.
"Rajveer was speaking about the Butana gang rape and the Gurhmandi case when ABVP activists came and tore our posters, shouting slogans," Nodeep told The Telegraph.
"Police were with them. On Women's Day, we have to speak out about how culprits who have raped or killed Dalits roam free. Anyone who speaks out is attacked, but if we stop speaking then we will be silenced forever."
The ABVP-led Delhi University Students Union (DUSU) said in a statement that men present at the event had "attacked" its joint secretary Shivangi Kharwal.
"DUSU was conducting an event of self-defence training programme for girls where Delhi police personnel and other defence trainers were present to train girls. Right outside the venue of the programme, outsiders and ex-students of the university had organised an event wherein posters with objectionable slogans such as 'Indian Army Rape Us' were displayed," the statement read.
"Objectionable slogans were raised just as a few girls led by Shivangi Kharwal (of the ABVP) were passing by. Seeing the anti-army posters, they questioned the organisers about the motive of the event. In a reaction to the questions posed by Shivangi and her friends, the men present on the spot attacked the Delhi University Students Union joint secretary (Kharwal)," the statement added.
Meanwhile, Vasu Kukreja, Kisan Morcha's Legal Cell member who said he was at the location to meet Nodeep, alleged that Kharwal had thrashed him.
"The disruption by the ABVP started while Rajveer was speaking. As I tried to record it with my mobile phone, some ABVP person tried to snatch it. When I resisted, a woman whom people there identified as Shivangi caught me by the collar and slapped me."
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