Condemning the recent attack on students and teachers of the Centre-administered Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) in the capital, students of the prestigious St. Stephen's College staged a "boycott classes" march in their campus here on Wednesday.
Over a hundred students boycotted their classes of the day completely and gathered in the college campus to march towards the Arts Faculty building in Delhi university in a show of solidarity with the students and teachers protesting at JNU.
Many students were heard raising slogans like "Iss Baar Nahi Hum Chodenge, Itihas Ki Dhara Modenge" (We will not let go this time, we will change the direction of history), while posters of "Stephens Against Fascism" were seen during the march
During the protest, the students also read aloud the Preamble of the Indian Constitution outside the Andrews Court in the college premises followed by a protest song.
One of the protesters said: "CAA-NRC-NPR (Citizenship (Amendment) Act-National Register of Citizens-National Population Register) is only another move of the government at the Centre against the rights of Muslims, but they have also simply ignored the concerns of the people of Assam, Tripura, and other states in the Northeast."
Now, we're not saying that students from St. Stephen's cannot or should not protest what they believe is wrong.
At the same time, as some people on Twitter pointed out, when a minority institution with a large percentage of reserved seats sloganeers on secularism, it does sound a tad odd.
This as hilarious as it gets. St.Stephens sloganeering on secularism? The institute receives 95% funds from govt but reserves 50% seats for Christians. As per constitution of St Stephen, the supreme council of the college,will have its members only from the church. https://t.co/Nmwa52qiRb— Prasanna Viswanathan (@prasannavishy) January 8, 2020
Jamia is protesting because it is a Muslim Institution.— Kapil (@kapsology) January 8, 2020
JNU is protesting because it is a Naxal Institution.
St Stephens is protesting because it a Christian institution.
Itni victim mentality laate kahan se ho be bhakton!
According to an article by The Telegraph from last year, St Stephen’s, a minority institution that is also Delhi University’s most sought-after college, reserves half its seats for Christians. About 41.5% of seats, the publication says is reserved for the general category.
Not everyone is skeptical though. To many, the very fact that St Stephen's is protesting, underscores the severity of the situation.
As one Twitter user said, "this is a big moment for 'elite' 'insular' St Stephen's College".
A large majority seem to agree.
Take a look at some of the posts:
This is St. Stephen's college, no longer will it be known as the apolitical institution. pic.twitter.com/u7hlVHLzCy— joji fan acc (@jyootsnaa) January 8, 2020
Bravo St Stephen’s College!!!!— Sanjay Jha (@JhaSanjay) January 8, 2020
No one can stifle, suppress and subjugate the voice of young India!
Students of other colleges like Lady Shri Ram College and Miranda House also reportedly boycotted their classes on the call given by Stephen's students to raised their voice against the recent attacks on universities.
Major violence resulting in serious injury to JNU students and teachers broke out on Sunday in the university campus, located in the southern part of the city, when a mob of masked goons raided the hostels attacking inmates with iron rods and sticks.
Following the incident, protests have broken out in various parts of the country.
(With inputs from agencies)