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No Arrests By Delhi Police Even After Videos From JNU Attack Go Viral

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It has been more than 24 hours since the attack on the JNU Campus took place. The peaceful atmosphere of the university turned into a zone of fear, riots, and violence when a mob barged in and attacked the students and teachers, and vandalised the campus.

A college campus is supposed to be the most protected area for students. However, everything that has been going on, especially in the case of Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI) and Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) has set a precedent of unimaginable terror in the minds of all those who aspire to study in such institutions.

Destruction in the wake of the armed mob who went on a rampage through JNU.

Isn’t this one of the biggest examples of an outrageous violation of the right to safety? The most surprising part of this entire issue has been the feeble attitude of the authorities who are entitled to take action.

When asked, the Delhi Police stated that the entire thing was an on-campus scuffle between students. Eyewitnesses said that around 50 masked goons began the act of violence by beating up the students and also the professors trying to protect the students. JNUSU vice-president Saket Moon said, “The police have been on the campus since afternoon, but they have done nothing.” Others pointed to the delay in calling in the police and their failure to make any arrest.

Union Home Minister Amit Shah asked the Delhi police to prepare a detailed report about the same. Along with this, the student union has demanded the resignation of the Vice-Chancellor. However, not a single arrest has been made, as yet, in this case.

Jawaharlal Nehru University Student Union (JNUSU) President Aishe Ghosh after she was attacked on January 5.

The important question is, why the delay in making arrests when the culprits can be easily identified from the video clips, social networking sites, and the screenshots of WhatsApp messages that are being circulated? What, or who, is stopping the police from taking any action?

A total of 34 people have been injured, including students and teachers. The police have even stated that some of the goons have been clearly identified and complaints are being lodged.

Meanwhile, there have been many attempts to manipulate the narrative, as the TV news channels, like Times Now, have been showing certain counter revelations. The unnecessary delay in arrests is paving the way for the miscreants to distort facts in their own way.

Meanwhile, other major universities in India have come forward in absolute solidarity with JNU. Jadavpur University had called for a peaceful protest on January 6, Monday, at around 2 PM. The scenario turned violent after an alleged clash between the BJP and CPM supporters, which was followed by a lathi-charge on the students and protesters by the police.

The situation across the country has intensified further. While the students of the Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) took out a candlelight march, students in Hyderabad held a demonstration, accompanied by students from Pune’s Film and Television Institute of India (FTII).

The recent addition to the row of protests from across the country was the peaceful protest held at the Gateway of India, in Mumbai, led by the students of Tata Institute of Social Sciences and IIT.

Protest at Gateway Of India, Mumbai. Image credit: Seema Chishti/Twitter.

Witnessing the increasingly fascist attitude of the ruling party and their supporters, are we in the process of becoming Germany from 1939? If not, then the government must put everything aside and take this as the top priority.

Jawaharlal Nehru University Student Union (JNUSU) President, Aishe Ghosh, said, “Yesterday’s attack was an organised attack by goons of RSS and ABVP. Since the past 4-5 days, violence was being promoted on the campus by some RSS affiliated professors and ABVP.”

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Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

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Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

Read more about her campaign.

MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

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A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Find out more about the campaign here.

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A psychologist and co-founder of a mental health NGO called Customize Cognition, Ritika forayed into the space of menstrual health and hygiene, sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights and gender equality as an MHM Fellow with YKA. She says, “The experience of working on MHM/SRHR and gender equality has been an enriching and eye-opening experience. I have learned what’s beneath the surface of the issue, be it awareness, lack of resources or disregard for trans men, who also menstruate.”

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A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

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A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform Change.org, demanding that the Government of Assam install
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Bidisha was selected in Change.org’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

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