Babul Supriyo manhandled: BJP and TMC lock horns, 4 FIRs filed

Union Minister of State Babul Supriyo heckled by left wing students at Jadavpur University in Kolkata, Thursday, Sept.19, 2019. Supriyo had arrived at Jadavpur University (JU) to address a seminar organised by the ABVP. (PTI Photo)

The heckling and gherao of Union minister Babul Supriyo by a section of students at Jadavpur University triggered a fresh round of political sparring on Friday.

Describing the JU students as nothing less than terrorists , West Bengal BJP president Dilip Ghosh said there should be a Balakot-like surgical strike to destroy anti-national hubs in JU campus . The ruling TMC, meanwhile, directed its criticism at the Governor for rushing to the university, and expressed solidarity with the V-C and students of JU.

Sharing pictures of the incident on Twitter, Supriyo, the Union MoS for Environment, Forest and Climate Change, said that those who were involved in his assault would be found out. These cowards will not be allowed to malign & tarnish the image of #JadavpurUniversity. U shall be found out by us soon but dont worry, you shall not be treated in the manner you treated me, he tweeted. We shall rehabilitate you mentally so that you & your Hooligan Friends (all footages available with the media) behave like you are supposed to behave as students till then.

Tweeting a picture of a student pulling him by his hair, Supriyo added, This is the guy who led the assault in #JadavpurUniversity. We will find him out and then see what @MamataOfficial does to him in terms of charging him for assault without ANY PROVOCATION whatsoever from our/my side.

JU students at a protest rally in Kolkata. Protests were also carried out by the BJP, ABVP and the SFI in the city. (Express Photo: Partha Paul)

On Thursday, Supriyo, a BJP MP, was heckled and manhandled by some students at JU. The students gheraoed Supriyo for over five hours, stopping him from leaving the campus. When Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar rushed to JU in the evening, his vehicle was also blocked for about an hour, before a huge police contingent escorted them out.

Speaking to reporters here on Friday, Ghosh said he would write to Union Home Minister Amit Shah describing the incident. Just like our security forces conducted surgical strike to destroy terror camps in Pakistan, our cadres would carry out the same type of surgical strike to destroy anti-national hubs in JU campus, he said.

Vowing action against students for assaulting Supriyo, Ghosh said, We know how to break their hands and soon we will do it. Backing Governor Jagdeep Dhankar s move to visit the campus, Ghosh said, The state government was sitting idle and waiting for Supriyo to get killed. It is unprecedented and only happens in Bengal. There is no law and order here.

Kolkata: Left wing students of Jadavpur University raise slogans during a protest against Union Minister Babul Supriyo’s participation in ABVP seminar,in Kolkata, Thursday, Sept.19, 2019. (PTI Photo)

The TMC issued a statement saying, We must punish the culprits who assaulted the students including the girl students of Jadavpur University and ransacked the campus. We express our total solidarity with the Vice Chancellor, Professors and students of Jadavpur University…. One thing must be made very clear: universities are autonomous institutions and as per time-honoured tradition, police cannot enter university campus without permission of V-C.

Meanwhile, police filed four FIRs in the matter. They said they lodged a suo motu case on Thursday night against 180-190 members and supporters of ABVP and BJP. It is alleged that they being equipped with lathi, bamboo and iron rod formed an unlawful assembly in front of gate number 4 of JU, a senior police officer told The Indian Express. Another case was filed on a complaint by Debraj Debnath, general secretary of Left-backed Arts Faculty Students Union of JU, against members and followers of ABVP and RSS.

Union Minister of State Babul Supriyo heckled by left wing students at Jadavpur University in Kolkata, Thursday, Sept.19, 2019. Supriyo had arrived at Jadavpur University (JU) to address a seminar organised by the ABVP. (PTI Photo)

The other complaints were filed by BJP member Agnimitra Paul, who claimed she was assaulted, and Nityananda Mistry, Convenor, ABVP of JU, alleging unlawful assembly in JU and assault.