Accused students demanding Atrocity Act case against SPPU

ST CORRESPONDENT
Thursday, 11 April 2019

The students claimed that the university has ‘purposely’ filed the FIR because of their caste background (SC/ST, Bahujan) and have tried to tarnish their image by posing a strong case against them, at a press interaction held on Wednesday.

PUNE: As many as 12 students against whom Savitribai Phule Pune University (SPPU) had recently registered an FIR for damaging property during the protest at the refectory, have now submitted an application to the police for filing an atrocity case against the varsity. 

The students claimed that the university has ‘purposely’ filed the FIR because of their caste background (SC/ST, Bahujan) and have tried to tarnish their image by posing a strong case against them, at a press interaction held on Wednesday.

The students have questioned the charges and claimed they were harsh. 

Akash Bhosale, a reporter of a web news portal who was present during the incident and also one of the accused in the FIR lodged, said, “I have been reporting about misconduct and wrongdoings of the university and hence out of revenge they complained against me. The authorities were waiting to pick on me and found this reason.”

The SPPU lodged the FIR at Chatuhshrungi Police Station on April 1, followed by which charges under Indian Penal Code (IPC) section 353 (Assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty), section 332 (Voluntarily causing hurt to deter public servant from his duty), section 143 (Punishment of whoever is involved in unlawful assembly), section 147 (Punishment for rioting), section 149  and section 427 (Damage to property) were imposed on the students.

Kunal Sapkale, Second Year MSc student and also an accused, stated that the FIR has caused him academic loss. “I have not been attending classes since April 1. A negative message about me has been spread which has tarnished my image causing mental stress.”

Sapkale, who belongs to Schedule Tribe, stated that the university has complained only against 12 backward caste students. “From January we have been revolting against the wrong functioning of the refectory and have repeatedly complained about the bad quality of food served there. Because of the protests, most of our names came forward in media reports, consequently the university targeted us. They have our admission details which mentioned our caste. A staff member also swore on our caste during the argument,” he said.

Akash Donde, final year student said, “I am the first generation who has been pursuing education in the family. I belong to a drought-prone area in Ahmednagar. For me education means a lot and this FIR will harshly affect my career.”

Senior Police Inspector Bhaskar Jadhav, in-charge of Chatuhshrungi Police Station told Sakal Times, “We have received an application for filing a case under Atrocity Act. However no action has been taken on the application.”

Sakal Times contacted Registrar Prafulla Pawar but he declined to comment on the matter.

Related News