His remarks came against the backdrop of police crackdown against students of Jamia Millia Islamia in Delhi and the Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) in Uttar Pradesh, following protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act.
Union Human Resource Development (HRD) Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ appealed to political parties on Thursday to keep academic institutions away from their politics, while asserting that students are a priority of the Narendra Modi government. His remarks came against the backdrop of police crackdown against students of Jamia Millia Islamia in Delhi and the Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) in Uttar Pradesh, following protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act.
Protesters torched four public buses and two police vehicles as they clashed with the police near Jamia Millia Islamia during the demonstration on Sunday, leaving nearly 60 people including students, cops and fire fighters injured. On Sunday itself, AMU students protested against the legislation in Aligarh and clashed with police at a campus gate, after which the university adminstration announced closure of the institution till January 5. Officials said at least 60 students were injured in the clashes.
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“With folded hands I appeal to political parties to keep academic institutions away from their politics,” Pokhriyal told PTI on the sidelines of a two-day conference of presiding officers of legislative bodies being held here. Asserting that academic institutions are important of any country as they build the future of the nation, he described the students as “assets” and said, “They are our priority and the Narendra Modi government is working day and night for their better future.”
Students from various academic institutions both inside and outside the country came out in support of the Jamia students, opposing the police action in the campus. Earlier Prime Minister Narendra Modi had also appealed people to maintaining peace, unity and brotherhood, and requested them to stay away from any sort of rumour mongering and falsehoods.