A video of Jamia Millia Islamia University students protesting against the Citizenship Amendment Act is being circulated on social media, alleging the students raised slogans against Hindus.
The clip is going viral alongside a video of students of Aligarh Muslim University, with claims that protesters at Aligarh chanted “Hinduon ki kabr khudegi”. This has since been debunked by Alt News, which pointed out that the students in Aligarh were actually raising slogans against Hindutva, Savarkar, the Bharatiya Janata Party, Brahminism, and casteism.
Amit Malviya, who heads the BJP’s national information and technology wing, shared both clips on social media, saying: “If this is the mindset that pervades in these ‘minority’ institutions, imagine the plight of Hindus and other minorities in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan.”
However, protesters said the Jamia video has been morphed, and the sloganeering was against “Hindutva”, not “Hindus”.
In the video, a young man raising the slogans can be heard shouting, “Hum leke rahengey azaadi, Amit Shah se, Modi se.” The camera isn’t focused on him when the “Hinduon se azaadi” slogan is raised. Several students told Newslaundry his voice was edited to insert “Hindu” instead of “Hindutva” into the clip. When the video speed is slowed, “Hindutva” can clearly be heard.
Aquib Rizwan, a political science student at Jamia, said the video is “completely fake” and “doctored”. “Our Hindu brothers and sisters study here along with us and are also part of our protest,” he said. “We can never want to divide the nation between Hindus and Muslims. This is pre-planned to divide us on the basis of Hindu-Muslim and divert us from the main objective, which is to protest against the Hindutva Citizenship Amendment Act.”
Referring to the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, Rizwan added, “Tarah ke vidoes sirf ye university ke protest ko badnaam karne k liye nikaali jaa rahi hain. Iske zimmedar wahin hain jinhone 70 saal pehley azaadi ki jung me na hi humara saath diya balki British sarkar se maafi bhi maangi.” Roughly translated, he says: “Such videos are being spread around to defame the protests. The people responsible for this are the same people who bowed down to the British 70 years back.“
Eyewitnesses who spoke to Newslaundry did not confirm the use of anti-Hindu slogans in the protests at Jamia Millia Islamia.
Journalist Rajdeep Sardesai, who was present at the protests, also refuted the claims, saying “not a single ‘anti-India’ or communal slogan has been heard.”
Shoaib Pasha, a Jamia student who participated in the protest, told Newslaundry, “Giving this fight a Hindu-Muslim colour is completely derailing the issue. Many of our Hindu brothers and sisters are with us in this fight against the Citizenship Amendment Act. Whoever truly believes in the constitution believes that this Act goes against its very basic tenets. This ‘anti-Hindu’ video of the Jamia protest is clearly the work of the BJP IT cell to delegitimise our protests.”
Students pointed out that on Monday, Hindu students formed a human chain to allow their Muslim peers to offer namaz on a road outside the university. Suyash Tripathi, a law student at Jamia, said, “Jamia is a beautiful example of secularism. We have been protesting in a peaceful manner for the past four days, and non-Muslims like me in hundreds have come and joined our protests. Our participation in these protests are proof of the secular fabric of this nation.”