A student was stabbed on Friday at University College in Thiruvananthpuram, allegedly by a group of SFI members for singing a song without their consent. Akhil, a degree student and an SFI supporter, has been hospitalised.
The incident has triggered widespread protests against SFI, the CPM’s student wing. Students have alleged that the SFI unit in the state-run college does not allow other organisations to function there.
A case has been registered against six SFI workers, including one Naseem, who allegedly stabbed Akhil. Naseem, police said, has been involved in several other criminal cases in the past, including an attack on policemen on college premises.
Students told the media that the 13-member unit of SFI behaved like “fascists”. “Akhil was attacked when he refused to stop singing as per their diktat. One has to take their permission if he wants to get acquainted with another student. Otherwise, the SFI group would harass them,’’ a student said.
Akhil’s father Chandran, also a CPM worker, said the SFI group attacked his son last year too.
Leader of Opposition in the Assembly, Ramesh Chennithala, said in a release, “The SFI, which never allows any other student organisation to work inside the University College, has now turned towards its own workers. This exposes the fascist attitude of SFI.” The LDF government has asked the state Education Department to submit a report on the issue.
A few months ago, a woman degree student of University College tried to commit suicide after alleged harassment by SFI members on the campus.
SFI state secretary K M Sachindev has said the organisation’s unit at University College has been dissolved and six students allegedly involved in the attack have been suspended. Stern action would be taken against the cadres, he said.