Early in January, 2020, a masked mob barged into the Jawaharlal Nehru University and began beating up students who were protesting against fee hikes. Several students were injured, among them Aishe Ghosh, a leader from the Students’ Federation of India. She had to be hospitalised and instead of preparing an FIR based on her complaint, she was charged with vandalism.
One year later, nobody from the group of outsiders who came in has been arrested. JNU went into lockdown and has still not opened, while other institutions have.
Ghosh sees attacks on JNU and the effort to change its character as part of a greater plan to clamp down on dissent. “This government wants only homogenised thinking,” she says in this podcast interview with Sidharth Bhatia. Some of the momentum of the protests has gone, she admits, but students all over India will now have “no option but to protest” to save education.