Four students of the Aligarh Muslim University, who took out a march in support of Palestine amid the ongoing Israel-Hamas conflict have been booked under Sections 155A, 188 and 505 of the Indian Penal Code for hatred and enmity between different communities. The First Information Report (FIR) was lodged against four students who have been named and a case was also registered against several unidentified people.
The names of the students mentioned in the FIR are Khalid, Kamran, Aatif and Naved Choudhary.
A video of the march went viral on social media recently; it shows students chanting slogans in support of Palestine. The case was lodged on the night of Monday, October 9. The FIR filed in the case mentioned the march being taken out without permission.
Mrigank Pathak, SP (City) Aligarh, said that the police had received a tip-off about the protest being held by students inside the AMU campus, on an international issue, with prior, necessary permission.
Meanwhile, the AMU administration has said that as per law, it would take strict action against the students and others involved in the march.
On October 7, the Hamas militant group launched a surprise attack on Israel, which included gunning down citizens and unprecedented infiltration into Israeli towns.The Hamas has also taken several people hostage, including foreign citizens. Meanwhile, in retaliation, Israel has initiated ‘Operation Iron Swords’. So far, more than 1,100 people have died so far in both Israel and Palestine amid the ongoing conflict.
In hindsight, the drivers of Hamas’s startlingly well-planned, land-sea-air attack on Israel on Saturday were in plain sight.
The operation reflects a pattern of four wars and regular outbreaks of violence between Israel and Hamas militants in Gaza since 2005, when Israel withdrew its military posts and forcibly removed 9,000 Israeli settlers from the territory.
Each time Hamas has launched rockets at Israel or engaged in similar provocations, it has drawn heavy retaliation from Israel in the form of major bombings on the Gaza Strip. Hamas, however, seems to regard this as a cost of doing business.
An important factor motivating Hamas towards violence is that it has to watch its flanks. Other smaller, but increasingly extremist groups, are contesting its authority in Gaza, notably Palestinian Islamic Jihad.
These groups have, at times, independently launched rocket attacks on Israel, which bring retribution on the whole territory.
On top of this, the Israeli government formed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu last December is the most right wing in Israeli history. This government has made no secret of its desire to annex the West Bank and has permitted significant expansion of Jewish settlements in the territory, which are illegal under international law.
That has led to conflict between settlers and young West Bank Palestinians, who in the past year have formed a loose grouping known as the “Lions’ Den”.
This grouping, comprising independent militants with apparently no central control, has scant regard for the Palestinian Authority, which governs the West Bank and is led by the octogenarian Mahmoud Abbas. The Palestinian Authority has little real administrative, security or moral authority in the territory.
The “Lions’ Den” also vies with Gaza militant groups for influence among Palestinian youth – both in Gaza and the West Bank.
Added to this, a minister in Netanyahu’s coalition, Itamar Ben-Gvir, has visited the Temple Mount, the site of the Al-Aqsa Mosque, one of the holiest shrines in Islam. This was considered a provocation by all Palestinians – both in the West Bank and Gaza. Further angering Palestinians, Israeli tourists also travelled to the site over the recent Sukkot holiday.