Student leader Pooja Shukla abducted and taken to undisclosed location

We have just received information that student leader Pooja Shukla has been abducted from outside Polytechnic college, Gomtinagar in Lucknow UP.

Pooja Shukla was taken by unidentified men to an undisclosed location and doesn’t have her mobile phone with her. She managed to get someone else’s phone and quickly informed an acquaintance that she has been abducted. “I am feeling very scared. I don’t know who these people are, they don’t look like policemen”, she informed on the phone. She has said that she has been kept in a dark room and doesn’t know what is going to happen.

This is one more assault on this student leader from Lucknow University. She had gone on a hunger strike when the VC of the university withheld her entrance exam results, barring her from taking admission in a master’s course.

Subsequently, Pooja Shukla along with fellow protesters was brutalised by UP police, lathi-charged, her clothes torn, though there was FIR lodged against her. Due to the police torture she had fainted and suffered hypotension and dehydration. During this time, police also forced her to break her fast, stop the strike and take back her demands.

Sadaf Jafar, a teacher and supporter of the strike had highlighted how the VC of the varsity was behaving in a threatening manner, “The VC had warned Pooja that he carries two guns and can shoot her anytime he wants. There was no security for her at nights and the VC had the Chhatrasangh room locked and the only toilet in the area was also locked.”

Since then there has been constant threat to her life because of her peaceful movement against the irregularities in admission procedure of LU.

On the other hand, PM Modi is on a visit to Lucknow to “take part to attend a programme marking the anniversary marking the third anniversary of three key urban development initiatives.”

It’s shameful that on the same day that the PM is visiting, a student leader involved in a peaceful movement demanding basic students’ rights is abducted in this manner.

UP state government needs to urgently look into this and find out about Pooja Shukla’s whereabouts!

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