On December 27, a non-violent protest march was conducted by the Aligarh Muslim University Student Union (AMUSU) in harmony with the ongoing protest against the disappearance of Jawaharlal Nehru University student Najeeb Ahmed. Ahmed has been missing since October 15.
At the end of the protest march, while addressing the students gathered at the University Circle, it was decided by AMUSU that a Rail Roko Andolan would be conducted by them on December 31st as a non-violent civil disobedient movement.
The Rail Roko Andolan commenced from Maulana Azad Library Canteen at 11:00 am. The plan was to reach the Aligarh Railway Junction by noon and cause blockage on the Delhi-Howrah route. The route would supposed to have been blocked till 5 o’clock in the evening.
Even though final semester exams are being conducted in the university, students gathered in the cold and participated in the protest. The protesting students were met by the police, PAC and RAF several times but they still managed to reach Aligarh Church where a lathi charge was imposed upon them along with the use of water cannon in order to stop the protesters from moving any further.
Several students were injured including the vice president of AMUSU. The injured protesters were taken to Jawaharlal Nehru Medical College (Aligarh).
Nabeel Usmani, Secretary, AMUSU managed to reach the railway junction with a few other students but on hearing that the President, Faizul Hasan and Vice President Nadeem Ansari along with other protestors had been stopped by the police and were facing a lathi charge, returned to the fold.
400 students were by the police till 4:10pm in the afternoon before being let go.
“This was a bold move by the AMUSU. When autocracy and intransigence rules, ‘strolling of anguish’ becomes indispensable” says Sharjeel Usmani, a student of Political Science Honours.