Jamia Millia student decides to quit varsity over Batla issue

By TCN News,

New Delhi: M.Phil student of Jamia Millia Islamia and eminent RTI activist, Afroz Alam Sahil on Wednesday decided to quit the university in protest against the presence of Lt. Governor of Delhi Tejender Khanna as Chief Guest at the convocation of Jamia Millia. Afroz said Khanna had not allowed judicial probe into the Batla House encounter which claimed lives of two Jamia students and arrest of three more subsequently.

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Afroz termed Khanna’s presence as Jamia’s insensitivity to the demand of justice in Batla House case.

Afroz, who is also convenor of Forum for Student Democracy, has questioned presence of Lt. Governor Tejender Khanna as Chief Guest at convocation of Jamia Millia Islamia. Reacting strongly to inviting Mr. Khanna, who refused judicial enquiry into Batla House shootout in which two JMI students were killed and three others were arrested on grounds of having links with terrorists, Afroz has filed RTI questioning why he was invited to the institute, to whose students he denied Justice.

“It should be noted that Judicial Enquiry, as ordered by NHRC was denied on orders of Mr. Khanna as Lt. Governor of Delhi. The NHRC when asked under RTI Act had a ready reply. “The Lieutenant Governor of Delhi declined to pass an order for magisterial inquiry in the instant case as laid down under the guidelines of the Commission,” Afroz said in a media statement on Wednesday evening soon after the convocation of Jamia.

The RTI has also asked JMI administration to furnish detail of the funds which were collected in name of Legal Aid to the affected students. Around one lakh rupee were donated by the students and ten lakh by then SP leader Amar Singh for the families of the arrested student to pursue the cases. Even after around three years, no amount is given to the families of the students.

Expressing anger at JMI’s administration decision to invite Tejender Khanna, Afroz said, it is now well known that the Lt. Governor of Delhi , Mr Tejender Khanna rejected the demand for an independent magisterial inquiry into the Batla House Shoot out of 2008. His anti-human rights stand shocked the families of the victims and the larger Muslim community.

“How can the JMI invite such a person to hand over the degrees who himself has denied right to justice to students of the same institution? JMI students have been falsely implicated in terror cases, The Vice Chancellor Mr. Najeeb Jung who himself has many times expressed solidarity with the families of the victim and has asked for the judicial enquiry is hosting the man who declined it,” Afroz said.

Afroz, who has filed around 50-odd RTI queries on the Batla House encounter alone, said: “The denial of Judicial Enquiry is not only denial of justice but also a serious threat to national security as real culprits of the terror attacks may be roaming free and planning more dreadful attacks? The citizen of India deserves to know the real criminals and terrorists behind the attacks. Killing innocent students and arresting them in name of terror will never be a solution.”

It should also be noted that Mohammad Shakeel, a second-year MA student, and Zia-ur-Rehman, a third-year BA student, were arrested from New Delhi on September 21, 2008 for their alleged involvement in serial blasts. Delhi Police have said they, along with 10 others arrested, were part of the Indian Mujahideen that has claimed responsibility for the serial bombings in the national Capital as well as other cities in recent months.

In this backdrop, Afroz has decided “to discontinue his study in Jamia Millia Islamia as an M.Phil student.” He said he does not want to study in university which is becoming insensitive to the demand of Justice.