Manipur University students clash with police inside campus
Students of the crisis-hit Manipur University Wednesday clashed with security forces inside the campus during which police used tear gas shells, police sources said.
The students were demonstrating in the campus demanding "unconditional release" of all the 15 teachers and students arrested in September following an FIR lodged on a complaint by acting Vice-Chancellor Prof K Yugindro. The clash broke out when the protesting students demanded to meet Yugindro and were prevented by policemen.
Both the sides had a heated exchange of words following which the police personnel lobbed tear gas shells to disperse the agitators, sources said, adding several students were detained. The Manipur University Teachers Association (MUTA) denounced the police action on students. Earlier, MUTA members took mass casual leave Wednesday, university sources said.
The teachers were protesting the delay in releasing the arrested 15 teachers and students as well as withdrawal of the FIR. The FIR was lodged on September 20 which followed a midnight raid by security forces led to the arrest of 89 students and teachers. Of them, police had released all but 15, whose names were in the FIR for "wrongful confinement, illegal detention and attempt to murder" when Yugindro assumed charge as acting VC on September 20.
The university has been on the boil since May with academic activities taken a hit. After a 85-day strike by students, the varsity had opened on August 23. The agitators had been demanding removal of then vice chancellor A P Pandey for alleged administrative and financial lapses.
President Ram Nath Kovind, in his capacity as the visitor of the university, recently placed Pandey under suspension as an enquiry was underway into the allegations of irregularities against him. Yugindro was appointed as the acting VC soon after Pandey's suspension.