Protests grow at AMU over Jinnah portrait controversy

AMU Issue: Internet Services suspended in Aligarh, Section 144 imposed in Town

Jinnah portrait row sparks 'freedom movement' in India after Hindu extremists attack AMU students

Even as the indefinite dharna and boycott of academic activities by students in Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) continued, a video of protesting students shouting slogans of "Azadi", apparently against right-wing groups, went viral on social media.

Jinnah's picture was in the campus since 1938. "Who will do it?" on his official Twitter page that reportedly led to incitement of violence against students of AMU.

Raking up the row over the portrait of Muhammad Ali Jinnah at Aligarh Muslim University, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Sudhanshu Trivedi said people who are supporting the display of Jinnah's portrait on the campus are the same who stood with terrorist like Afzal Guru. Section 144 was also imposed in the district to maintain peace and prevent "rumour mongering".

Talking to ANI, Trivedi castigated sympathizers of Jinnah, who was responsible for country's partition.

The services will remain suspended until Saturday midnight so that communal messaging inciting communal clashes aren't circulated. AMU Teachers' Association (AMUTA) has sent a notice to President Ram Nath Kovind about "urgently institute" a high-level judicial inquiry into this incident.

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The Jinnah row started after BJP's Aligarh MP Satish Gautam wrote to AMU raising objections to the portrait.

The AMU students also clashed with the police, resulting in 28 students and 13 policemen sustaining injuries. Lyricist and poet Javed Akhtar, too, waded into the controversy by saying that not only Jinnah but also the temples built for Godse must be condemned. He also said that Indian leaders' posters will not be found anywhere in Pakistan, so why should India hang portraits of Pakistan' leaders.

"We the Alumni of Bahrain once again demand stern action against the perpetrators/conspirators who are hell bent on vitiating the atmosphere of peace and harmony that otherwise normally prevails in the AMU campus", he said.

He said that BJP is doing politics in the name of Jinnah.

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