Police Swoop Down On Restive FTII Campus At Midnight, Arrest 5 Students For Rioting

19/08/2015 8:00 AM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:25 AM IST
Hindustan Times via Getty Images
NEW DELHI, INDIA - AUGUST 3: Students of Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) joined by students from several other institutes and people from various organizations as they hold a protest march from Jantar Mantar to the Parliament House against the appointment of TV actor Gajendra Chauhan as FTII Chairman on August 3, 2015 in New Delhi, India. (Photo by Vipin Kumar/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

Police, armed with a list of 17 people, swooped down on the campus of the restive Film and Television Institute of India at midnight and arrested five students on charges of rioting and and unlawful assembly, according to reports.

Of the 17 students named in the FIR lodged by the director of the institute, who was held hostage by some of them on Monday, three are women who were not arrested, reported the Times of India. While there was confusion about some of the names, some students escaped arrest because they were not on campus, according to the report.

Director Prashant Pathrabe was prevented from leaving his office late on Monday by agitating students protesting "irrational and unjustified" assessment of incomplete diploma projects. Pathrabe had decided to go ahead with the assessment of diploma films made by students of the 2008 batch despite stiff opposition from students and faculty members, reports said.

Acting on a complaint filed by Pathrabe, police lodged an FIR against 15 students. The students have been charged under sections 147 (rioting), 143, 149 (unlawful assembly), 353 (obstructing public servant from discharging duty), 341 (wrongful restraint) and 323 (voluntarily causing hurt) of the IPC, according to TOI.

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The arrested students have been taken to the Deccan Gymkhana police station.

The gherao came amid now 71 days of protest against the appointment of BJP member and TV actor Gajendra Chauhan as chairman of the prestigious institute.

TOI reported that around 45 minutes before the arrests, two groups of students and faculty members went to registrar UC Bodake's house in the campus to ask him to be present while they were being taken into custody. No one opened the door at Bodake's house.

"This is unacceptable. The students are our responsibility. I am surprised no one from the administration is here. The action is not justified at all," NDTV quoted faculty member and acting dean at FTII, Sandip Chatterjee, as saying.

The students will be produced in court today, the report stated.

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