'Stop her or be prepared for arrest': DU college tells parents as student fight for women's safety

Shambhavi has been at forefront of protests demanding resignation of new principal, days after several female students were allegedly harassed by unidentified men during fest.


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DU's Indraprastha College for Women protest (Source: AISA)DU's Indraprastha College for Women protest (Source: AISA)

Press Trust of India | March 31, 2023 | 09:11 PM IST

NEW DELHI: The parents of Shambhavi, a second-year student at DU's Indraprastha College for Women, on Friday asked her to leave the college premises and not take part in any kind of protest after the administration allegedly threatened them with action. Shambhavi has been at the forefront of protests demanding the resignation of new principal Poonam Kumria, days after several female students were allegedly harassed by unidentified men during a fest at the college.

Earlier in the day, Shambhavi, who is also AISA's north zonal convenor, along with "around 200 students", marched in the college premises around 11, raising slogans such as "Poonam Kumria istifa do (Poonam Kumria resign)". Within an hour, her parents in Bihar received a phone call allegedly from the IPCW admin department.

Also Read | Indraprastha College for Women students claim men scaled walls, harassed them during fest

"Someone from the admin department of the college called my parents. They said your daughter has been doing so and so. Stop her or else FIR will be filed and she will be arrested," claimed Shambhavi, who prefers to use her first name.

"My worried parents called me up and asked me to stop the campaign and movement immediately. I assured them that there are 200 women with me on the campus. The phone call went around 12 pm and no direct warning was given to me. They called my parents directly. It happened around the time we staged a march on the college campus demanding administration accountability," said Shambhavi. The college administration did not respond to the calls and texts from PTI for response.

In a statement, AISA condemned the college administration's action, terming it a dastardly move, and hailed Shambhavi for not "bowing down to administration."

"The IPCW administration, in a dastardly move, has sent disciplinary notice to AISA north zonal convenor and IPCW student Shambhavi Chaudhary," AISA said in a statement. AISA's Delhi University unit secretary Anjali shared several videos and photos of Friday's march on the IPCW campus.

"Comrade Shambhavi is leading the protest, despite shameful attempts by the administration to silence her by sending a disciplinary notice to her parents! Salute to the spirit of students of IPCW for not bowing down to administration," she tweeted.

Holding placards and raising slogans against Kumria, the students including Shambhavi of the all-woman college held a march on campus amid slogans of "Poonam Kumria istifa do". Meanwhile, Proctor Rajni Abbi said she visited the college and has asked for a report to see what action should be taken.

"The university has not taken any action so far. We do not have anybody's number. I don't know about college. We have asked for a report and we will see what can be done. I visited the college today and saw students protesting on the campus," she told PTI.

Around 200 students marched on the campus, demanding the safety of women in campus and the establishment of GSCASH (gender sensitization committee against sexual harassment). They also demanded action against the police personnel who allegedly harassed students detained following a protest on Wednesday.

Also Read | Men seen 'climbing' walls of Miranda House to see Diwali fest; students allege harassment

On Tuesday, unidentified men allegedly trespassed, shouted slogans and harassed women students during the 'Shruti' festival at the college. Following the incident, the police registered an FIR under IPC sections 337 (causing hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others) and and 188 (disobedience to an order lawfully promulgated by a public servant) and arrested seven people.

The men who had trespassed were heard chanting "Miranda, IP dono hamara (Miranda House and Indraprastha College both are ours)" and "Miranda nahi chhoda to IP bhi nahi chhodenge (We didn't leave Miranda, we won't leave IP either)". The police, on their part, said there was an excess crowd near the college gate during the fest. Around 3 pm, some overzealous students started to enter the college in a hurry. In the process, there was heavy pressure on the gates and some students fell down, they said.

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