Kolkata, Aug 11: Jadhavpur University students on Thursday started a sit-in demonstration outside the Vice-chancellor office in Kolkata as the Executive Council (EC) meeting continued. The students continued the protest outside the meeting hall and refused to allow the EC members to leave. As per the reports, the EC members and VC Suranjan Das are still locked inside the meeting hall. “We are not against the EC members leaving the campus. But they will have to go through us,” said a student, reported TOI.
The students have been demanding the withdrawal of the notification that was issued on June 7, protesting against certain provisions of the “West Bengal Universities and Colleges (Administration and Regulation) Bill-2017”. The bill will allow the West Bengal government to set up rules for conducting students’ body or union election.
The members of AFSU demanded that Jadavpur University adopt a resolution describing the government’s notification as “undemocratic” and “unacceptable”. We will not withdraw our agitation till the EC meeting passes such a resolution,” said AFSU spokesperson Somasree.
According to the reports, the notification has amended the rules regulating the constitution, functions, and procedure of election. The notification also sets up an apolitical students’ union in the state-run institutes.
“The St Xavier’s model must be opposed by all democratically inclined individuals and organizations. This attack on campus democracy is, in fact, a part of a long series of attacks by the BJPRSS government at the Centre and Trinamool in Bengal. We have already seen a steep hike in the fees, cutbacks in fellowships and scholarships, as well as seat cuts across the country .Reforming the students’ union elections is an attempt to impose WTO regulations in the education system,” said Aishik, spokesperson of All India Student Association, reported TOI.
VC had earlier declared that the bill has already been passed in the state assembly. The reports have it that some students barged into the EC meeting, demanding a written assurance from the administrative decision-making council. The council, however, send the deputation, submitted by the students, to the state.