Former Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav has targeted the Yogi Adityanath-led Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government over lathicharge on students of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU), saying that politics should not be done with educational institutions.
Questioning the police action on students, the Samajwadi Party leader said that the police under the current government was working for just a handful of people and not for all citizens.
AMU के छात्रों पर लाठीचार्ज करवाना किस तरह की राजनीति है. कम से कम शिक्षा के क्षेत्र को तो राजनीतिक आग में नहीं झोंकना चाहिए. पुलिस ने जिस प्रकार अपनी भूमिका निभायी है उससे लगता है कि इस सरकार में पुलिस सबके लिए न होकर कुछ ख़ास लोगों के लिए ही सक्रिय होने को मजबूर है.
— Akhilesh Yadav (@yadavakhilesh) May 3, 2018
On Wednesday, protests were held outside AMU over the controversy surrounding Mohammad Ali Jinnah’s portrait in the campus. During the protests, the police resorted to lathi-charge to disperse the protesters.
A controversy broke out after Aligarh MP and BJP leader Satish Gautam demanded the removal of Jinnah's portrait which is being displayed on the walls of the AMUSU office.
Satish Gautam had on Monday written a letter to AMU Vice Chancellor Tariq Mansoor and raised objections over the Pakistan founder's picture hanging on the walls of the AMUSU office.
''I have heard a portrait of Muhammad Ali Jinnah is hung inside the campus. Kindly gather more details on this and give reasons behind it,'' BJP MP wrote to AMU V-C.
The BJP MP also posted #JinnahFreeAMU hashtag on the social media.
the matter soon snowballed into a political controversy with Congress terming the BJP's demand as nothing but a 'political gimmick'.
"Before partition, Jinnah fought for India's independence. It's a different matter that country was divided in which he played a crucial role. But to remove his portrait from AMU is a political gimmick by BJP, " Congress leader Karan Dalal said.
Later, defending the portrait, apparently hanging there for decades, AMU spokesman Shafey Kidwai said on Tuesday that Jinnah was a founder member of the University Court and granted life membership of the student union.
"Traditionally, photographs of all life members are placed on the walls of the student union. Jinnah was also accorded life membership of the AMUSU in 1938. He was the founder member of the University Court in 1920 and also a donor. He was granted membership before the demand of Pakistan had been raised by the Muslim League," PTI quoted him as saying.