ABVP Condemns Attack by Mob at Holi Event in NEHU, Shillong Organised by WOSY; Demands Stringent Action

Chhatraahakti Desk

26 March, Shillong :  Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) strongly condemns the heinous attack perpetrated by a mob led by Easterson Sohtun who is the Vice President of NEHU’s Students’ Union, Aditya Sourav, and Gurudutt Tripathi during a peaceful Holi programme organised by the World Organisation of Student and Youth (WOSY) at North Eastern Hill University (NEHU) in Shillong. WOSY had organised a peaceful celebration of the festival of Holi beside the NEHU lake for the students of NEHU including some international students from Russia, Bhutan and Bangladesh. The programme was organised after obtaining all the necessary permissions from the NEHU authorities. Unfortunately, the peaceful celebration was disrupted by a mob attack led by Easterson Sohtun, Aditya Sourav and Gurudutt Tripathi who assaulted the students with hammers in which a few sustained injuries. Left Party-affiliated students are manipulating the innocent sentiments of university students for their own political advantage, thereby polluting the campus environment with propaganda.

The incident, which occurred on 25 March 2024, is a blatant violation of the fundamental rights to freedom of expression and assembly. It is deeply concerning that a platform meant for peaceful celebration and cultural exchange was disrupted in such a manner, jeopardizing the safety and security of the participants. It is to be noted, that there have been similar incidents before wherein Easterson Sohtun had attempted to assault WOSY members. ABVP firmly believes in fostering an environment where differing opinions can coexist peacefully, and violence has no place in democratic discourse. The actions of the perpetrators not only undermine the ethos of academic freedom but also pose a threat to the safety of students and scholars.

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ABVP Meghalaya State Secretary, Shri Tengku M Marak, stated, “ABVP extends its full support and solidarity to the students and organizers who were subjected to this unjustified violence. We stand with them in their demand for justice and reaffirm our commitment to upholding the principles of democracy, pluralism, and academic freedom. ABVP demands the authorities at North Eastern Hill University to take immediate and stringent action against those responsible for causing this reprehensible act. Such individuals must be held accountable for their actions to ensure that justice is served and to prevent any future recurrence of such incidents.”