Condemnation of the Fascist Attacks on the Students’ Federation of India

On February 9th, the far-right student organization Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) launched a coordinated attack against members of the Students’ Federation of India (SFI) and other left-wing student organizations at three different Indian universities – Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), Delhi University (DU), and the English and Foreign Languages University (EFLU).

The ABVP is the student wing of the fascist and Hindu supremacist paramilitary Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). The RSS is affiliated with the right-wing Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) administration led by Narendra Modi, a fascist demagogue. Notorious for committing hate crimes against India’s religious and ethnic minorities, they have further cemented the power of India’s far right government. Modi himself has been a member of the RSS for nearly all his life, and helped lead their underground activities in the 1970s.

On the night of the 9th, student organizations, including the socialist Students’ Federation of India (SFI), met at the three campuses to plan for the upcoming elections to their respective Student’s unions. ABVP units at these campuses disrupted these meetings, physically assaulting SFI members, going so far as to even sexually assault female attendees. 

YDSA stands with our comrades in the Students’ Federation of India. In the face of far-right repression and surveillance, SFI activists are engaged in a heroic struggle to protect the hundreds of millions of Indians who belong to marginalized groups on the basis of ethnicity, religion, caste, and gender. The SFI is the largest socialist student organization in India, with over 4.5 million members. Its members have helped lead all manner of popular movements, such as labor and peasant struggles, anti-caste, feminist, and LGBTQ movements. In 2020, the SFI mobilized students against the Citizenship Amendment Act, a blatantly Islamophobic change to India’s immigration policy. 

As socialists, we condemn these fascist attacks against our comrades. The ABVP, and by extension, the RSS and BJP, seek to smother civil society and advance their right-wing, Hindu-supremacist agenda. YDSA is proud to stand in solidarity with the Students’ Federation of India in their courageous struggle for secularism, often at the risk of their own lives and the lives of their loved ones. 

Red Salute!