After an IIT-Madras Phd scholar was brutally beaten up by a group of Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) members on Tuesday for organising a ‘beef fest’ in the varsity campus, one of his friend, in an interview to news agency ANI, stood up for him saying, “It is being reported as a beef party. It was not a celebration of the right for us to consume beef. The major point for the event was to have discussion within the institute and to raise awareness.”
The PhD scholar R Sooraj, was allegedly assaulted by ABVP members due to which he received severe injuries and also sustained a fracture in his right eye. The group had also issued death threats to all ‘beef eaters’ on the campus and had reportedly filed a complaint against the fest held on Monday.
Earlier on Monday, around 50 students of IIT-Madras had participated in the ‘beef fest’ inside the campus that was held to protest the central government’s decision to ban the trade of cattle for slaughter in animal markets. The incident happened on a day when the Madras High Court stayed the Centre’s notification on banning sale and purchase of cattle at animal markets for slaughter by four weeks.
The order of the high court comes amid raging protests against the ban in several places of Kerala and Tamil Nadu. On Monday, three Youth Congress workers, including Kannur YC district president Rijil Makkutty and activists Joshi Kandathil and Sharafuddin were suspended from the YC for publicly slaughtering a calf and distributing its cooked meat at beef festivals in Left-ruled Kerala.
Earlier on May 27, Kerala too witnessed ‘beef fests’ in various parts of the state to protest the ban. The protests in Kerala were led by activists of the ruling CPI (M)-led LDF, opposition Congress-headed UDF and their youth wings.