“You have been betrayed, ” said McDonnel to students at their national March.
The shadow chancellor John McDonnell addressed thousands of students in central London during the national students’ march on Wednesday.
The march was called in opposition to the abolition of maintenance grants as well as mounting debt and increasing cuts.
Students also chanted against the discrimination directed at international students, However, Free education and living grants funded by progressive taxation was the main demand of the demonstration.
The protest was organised by the National Campaign Against Fees and Cuts, and backed by NUS and Unite.
Shadow Chancellor, John McDonnell, spoke at its opening rally about how the Tory government has betrayed the students reflecting the labor party stand that was concurrent with what its leader Jeremy Corbyn said in a written statement to the protesters “Switching back to a loan in place of a maintenance grant will push the poorest students into higher levels of debt. We must also look again at restoring EMA and increasing college places, so all young people have the opportunity to go to further education and, if they wish, on to higher education too.”
The protest started at the University of London in Bloomsbury then marched via Leicester Square to the Parliament, past the Home Office and outside the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), where clashes erupted between the protesters and the police forces.
In a statement, Scotland Yard said, “A small group of protesters’ had thrown paint outside the Home Office during the chaotic scenes, and confirmed 12 people had been arrested for public order offences.”
In return, the National Campaign against Fees and Cuts (NCAFC) issued a statement saying, “Towards the end of the demonstration, the march was met with some of the most heavy-handed policing we have seen in years.” and described that “Once protesters reached the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, the office responsible for this latest round of attacks on education, riot police violently stormed the crowd.” confirming that “The police forced a large section of the protest into a kettle, resulting in panic and confusion.” moreover “At least 18 protesters were violently arrested. We condemn this unnecessary and aggressive response.”
The clashes marked the end of the march, but the students fight seems to be far from over.