16 October 2016 | His classmates recall Najeeb Ahmad as a quiet and introvert person. Hence, it came as a shock when news spread late evening on Saturday about his scuffle with another student Vikrant from Mahi Mandavi; he was badly beaten up in retaliation on the same night by some boys in the hostel. On the next day Najeeb went missing. The incident took place on Saturday night; he was seen last on Sunday afternoon by his roommate before lunch. His mother and brother, who arrived after his disappearance, are worried about his safety and well-being. JNUSU called for a protest at the Main Gate, tonight at 9:30 PM, where it was finally decided that students will continue to block the Main Gate till proper action is taken by the administration against those guilty and till Najeeb is safely restored in the campus.
The Informer, talked to Ahmad Noorani, a resident of the same hostel who claimed to have witnessed the events. He told The Informer that Vikrant had gone to Najeeb’s room for campaigning for hostel elections where he was slapped twice by Najeeb, the latter supposedly also offended the former’s religious sentiments. Vikrant later returned with his friends and beat him up, Najeeb was then locked in his room and the warden was called. It is said that the group threatened him and even manhandled him in front of the warden Sushil Kumar who did not try to intervene in the matter. The warden is accused of being a silent spectator and protecting the unruly group, some of whom were outsiders. The warden had asked Najeeb to leave the hostel after he was brought in front of the warden while no action was taken against the group of boys who bashed Najeeb. Najeeb who was badly bruised was taken to Safdarjung hospital for his treatment. On the next day, as told by his roommate he went missing before lunch while his belongings were still in the room. He had earlier called at home and asked his mother to come to the campus, visibly shaken by what had transpired. Najeeb’s mother has claimed that of late he has not been in a very stable frame of mind.
The students who had collected at the Main Gate said that the police was being non-cooperative and refused to take down their complaint. A formal FIR can only be filed by the university administration. Since it was a weekend a formal inquiry into the matter could not take place.
The Proctor present at the protest site was heckled by the students gathered and was unable to assure the students gathered who kept sloganeering against ABVP and the administration. The Proctor while answering the students asked them not to communalize the incident. He said the failure on the part of the warden at Mahi Mandavi should not be linked with communal differences. Previously, some students from the hostel had claimed that they found “All muslims are terrorists” written on the mess table the morning after the incident.
An ABVP activist, who did not want to be named, told The Informer that it is an individual matter and ABVP has no direct involvement in this particular case.
The Student’s Union President who also claimed of being physically abused by the ‘mob,’ demanded that the administration take immediate steps to file an FIR and take proper action against the accused. Some three hundred students had gathered to protest near the Main Gate. The gates remained closed and the traffic had to be diverted towards the Saraswatipuram Gate.
On the other side, at T-Point ABVP students blocked the road and demanded that no actions be taken against the students who had allegedly attacked Najeeb. The Proctor and the Rector assured the students that security shall be provided to the three students involved in the matter. Students have been asked to collect at the Provost’s Office at 11 o’clock tomorrow to file an official complaint.
Shikha Singh and Kumar Prashant are students at School of Language and work for The Informer. Chaitanya Haram, School of Biotechnology and Sunaina, a research scholar at International Studies work for the Photography Pool for The Informer.