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Repeated attacks on quota reformists at Dhaka University

  • Published at 01:06 am July 3rd, 2018
  • Last updated at 01:23 am July 3rd, 2018
A female activist came under attack while trying to protect another at Dhaka University campus on Tuesday<b>Dhaka Tribune</b>
Moriom Mannan Farah, an activist of the quota reform movement, comes under attack while trying to protect a movement leader, Faruk Hasan, near the Central Shaheed Minar on Dhaka University campus on Monday, July 2, 2018 Dhaka Tribune

At least 10 students were injured in the attacks

Chhatra League activists at Dhaka University on Monday cracked down repeated attacks on activists seeking reforms in government recruitment for the third consecutive day.

At least 10 students were injured in the attacks. The Chhatra League activists also physically assaulted female activists of General Students’ Right Protection Committee, a platform of the quota reform movement, sources said. 

The university sources said that the quota reform activists, led by Convener Hasan Al Mamun and Joint Convener Faruk Hossain were trying to gather at the Shaheed Minar premises to stage a demonstration, when 10-15 Chhatra League men launched an attack on them.

“It was a scheduled non-violent movement condemning the ongoing attacks on our activists and seeking release of our leaders. Chhatra League men foiled the program and beat up the activists in public,” said Lutfunnar Lina, an organizer of the movement. 

“The assailants also beat up the female protesters, and threatened to rape them, but nobody came to the rescue,” she said. 

Chhatra League central leader Jainul Abedin and Haji Mohammad Mohsin Hall unit General Secretary Mehedi Hasan Sunny led the attack, while a number of outsiders were involved, students seeking anonymity told the Dhaka Tribune.

They said 15-20 protesters were demonstrating in front of the Shaheed Minar around when the attack took place.

Quota reformist leader Faruk fell to the ground, and Chhatra League men surrounded him from all sides and beat him up brutally.

Female students who came forward to save Faruk were also assaulted by the attackers. 

“At least seven to eight Chhatra League assaulted a female activist,” an eyewitness said. 

Despite the Chhatra League attack, the agitators again crowded in front of Shaheed Minar around 11am. University Chhatra League leader Sunny and central Chhatra League Publicity Secretary Saif Babu along with their followers attacked them again.

Chhatra League has denied all allegations of assault, despite the witnesses and photos.

They said they took up positions on the campus to ensure a congenial atmosphere on the premises.

“We were informed that they would try to create chaos on campus in the name of a flag procession. We thwarted them,” Sunny said.

DU English department forms human chain

English department teachers and students at the university formed a human chain demanding identification of the attackers and punishment for attacking the protesting students.

English student and quota reform leader Nurul Haque was among the protesters who were injured in Saturday's attacks.

English department teacher Taslim Mahmud said: “We are not affiliated with any political party. We want a safe campus so that our students can express their views without fear.”

A video of Nurul getting beaten up by Chhatra League men went viral on social media. In the video, Nurul was seen holding the feet of DU teacher Prof Javed Ahmed, begging to be rescued from the assault.

Prof Javed, who tried to stop the assailants, was beaten up as well. 

Quota reform movement foiled at JU

Chhatra League men at Jahangirnagar University foiled a procession of protesting students there. 

Chhatra League activists gathered in front of the university library, from where the procession was meant to start, and seized the quota reform platform’s JU unit Convener Shakiluzzaman, foiling the protest. 

They also assaulted Razib Hossain, a mathematics student who was with Shakiluzzaman. 

Seeking anonymity, a student said: “Since Chhatra League men picked up the convener, no one dared to bring out the procession. They have threatened us that they will beat us if we continue the movement.” 

However, the university unit of Chhatra League has denied the allegations.

“No one was picked up. Shakiluzzaman is at his room in his dorm,” JU Chhatra League President Jewel Rana told the Dhaka Tribune.

“We learned that Chhatra Dal and Chhatra Shibir activists would take part in the quota reform protest, so we took position there to ensure a peaceful situation in the campus. Chhatra League will remain alert in future so that miscreants cannot create chaos in the campus,” he said.

JU Proctor Shikder Md Zulkernine said: “We saw Chhatra League men gathering in front of the central library. We were alert to prevent untoward incidents.

“I saw Shakiluzzaman in front of the library, but did not hear anybody getting picked up. If something like that happened, we will take proper action.”