Student Activists Attack BJP Office; Lathi-charged

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Patna: Disproportionately outnumbered by student activists, police in Patna on Thursday resorted to lathi charge after members of the All India Students Federation (AISF), Students Federation of India (SFI), and All India Students Association (AISA) forced their way into the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) office on Birchand Patel Marg and clashed with those inside while trying to vandalize the property both inside and outside.

Fueled by harsh rhetoric by Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), Janata Dal – U, Congress, and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), the student wings of four political parties, demanding justice for Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) student union leader and Bihar native Kanhaiya Kumar who has been charged with anti-national activities during a political event in the JNU campus a little over a week ago.

Irate protestors smashed the flower vase and window panes as those inside rushed to take cover to avoid being the target of the belligerent students. The police, who were easily outnumbered by the large presence of the students, resorted to lathi charge to disperse the crowd.

Several students were hurt in the incident. Some cops also received injuries after students snatched their batons and assaulted them with their own lathis. At least one cameraman was also reported to be hurt and his camera destroyed.

BJP has filed an FIR though no arrest was made in the case.

Police said that earlier there were only 50-60 students in the rally but were soon joined by RJD, JD-U, and NCP workers who were at their respective party office located on the same road.

Ramesh Prasad Singh, Kotwali police station in-charge, said the student protest was carried out without any permission and that is why the police had no idea about the rally.

"Had we known it in advance, we would have deployed more policemen on Birchand Patel Marg," Singh said.

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