On Tuesday, the Republic Media Network was blocked from the JNU Students Union press conference. As the Republic journalists tried to ask their questions, their mics were repeatedly removed, even as they were subjected to heckling and were gheraoed for upholding the right to report. However, in the face of this attack, Republic's reporters continued to ask questions over the JNU students' protests which have severely debilitated life for the common man in New Delhi in the last week. Watch in the video above the intolerant attempt to block Republic
The students of JNU have been protesting for the last few weeks about the new hostel manual which advocated a hike in hostel fees, dress code regulations, and curfew timings. While the JNU administration announced a partial rollback of some of the contentious provisions, the students expressed their dissatisfaction. On November 17, the JNU administration called upon the students to return to their classes and resume their academic work. On Monday morning, a large group of protesting students decided to march to Parliament demanding a complete rollback of the hostel manual.
Thereafter, Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure was imposed on the JNU campus by the Delhi police. Meanwhile, the Ministry of Human Resource Development also set up a high-power committee to resolve the issues of the JNU students via dialogue. The notification issued by the Ministry of Human Resource Development read, “With a view to restoring the normal functioning of the Jawaharlal Nehru University through dialogue with all the stakeholders and to advise the university administration for resolution of contentious issues, Government has appointed a High Power Committee". The Committee was requested to initiate dialogue with the students and the university administration immediately and submit recommendations.
Due to the student protests, the entry and exit points of multiple Delhi Metro stations near Parliament were shut down temporarily. While the students alleged use of excessive force, Delhi Police PRO Mandeep Randhawa stated that the allegations would be investigated. He said that attempts were being made to engage with the students regarding their demands and to convince them against taking the law in their own hands. Some of the agitating students were stopped and contained in the Safdarjung Tomb area. It was also revealed that around 100 students had been detained for showing ‘'aggressive defiance” to the directions of the police. On Monday evening, the police forcibly removed the JNU student protesters, who had brought civic life and traffic to a standstill, with an ambulance being among the many vehicles forcibly held up.