Two days after the RSS backed student wing ABVP installed a bust of V D Savarkar in Delhi University’s North Campus, Congress-affiliated NSUI Thursday said it has blackened the bust while garlanding those of Bhagat Singh and Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose installed alongside it. The ABVP termed the action as a “heinous act”.
NSUI and Left-backed All India Students’ Association (AISA) had criticised the ABVP’s installation of Savarkar’s bust outside the Arts Faculty on Tuesday. In a press statement, NSUI said that a “mercy petition seeker” like Savarkar cannot be kept on the same pedestal as that of “great freedom fighters” like Bose and Singh.
The statement lists the apologies Savarkar has sought from the British government in the pre-independence India and called him a British loyalist.
“Apart from being a mercy seeker, V D Savarkar was implicated in the murder conspiracy of The Father of the Nation, Shri Mahatma Gandhi. Savarkar opposed the quit India movement and hence was always working for his British masters,” the statement read.
“If ABVP still believes that Savarkar was a freedom fighter then why were they forced to bring the bust in a deceitful manner,” it added.
Around midnight, 20 NSUI activists blackened the bust of Savarkar and offered a shoe chain to it, the NSUI said. Slogans like Bhagat Singh and Bose amar rahe (long live) were also raised.
“How could they have put the bust of Savarkar along side Bose and Bhagat Singh, that too overnight. We had to take matter in our hands. The university administration has been silent about the issue. The varsity is working at the behest of ABVP, the child unit of RSS,” PTI quoted NSUI Delhi wing president Akshay Lakra as saying.
Meanwhile, the ABVP said the actions show the negative mindset of the NSUI and its parent organisation. “Last night, the humiliation done by the NSUI to the statue of Veer Savarkar at Delhi University is a heinous act and such an act for trivial political interests reflects the Congress’ thinking of the great freedom fighter of India,” ABVP national media convenor Monika Chaudhary told PTI.
“In the context of this deplorable act, the ABVP urges the administration to take stern action against those involved in insulting the statue of freedom fighter,” Chaudhary said.
DU Proctor Neeta Sehgal had issued a show cause notice to former DUSU president Shakti Singh, who installed the bust, stating that the university is deciding what action can be taken against the ABVP and Singh. Singh had installed the bust without taking permission from the authorities.
ABVP state secretary Siddharth Yadav himself criticised the move by Singh and DUSU.
“…ABVP is of the clear view that the busts should be installed in Delhi University campus only with the permission of the administration and other authorities concerned… the busts should be kept in the DUSU office till the permission is granted…” read a statement by him.
The matter has given fodder to student politics for the upcoming Delhi University Students’ Union polls which will be held on September 12.
(With inputs from PTI)