New Delhi: A scholarly discussion at IIT Kharagpur on the hot topic of Citizenship (Amendment) Act was on Thursday called off, the group of scholars claimed, after the permission for holding the programme in the varsity campus was withdrawn. Also Read - When Will CAA be implemented? Senior BJP Leader Answers

A spokesperson of research body “Education Group’ said that initially, they were given the permission to organise the programme at the IIT employees-run staff club within the campus on February 12. However, on Tuesday the club informed them that it had to be withdrawn for “some reasons”. Also Read - IIT-Kharagpur Researchers Develop Food Packaging From Cucumber Peels to Replace Plastic

“We were informally told that discussions on such a contentious issue cannot be held within the campus area as per the instructions from higher authorities of IIT Kharagpur,” she said. Also Read - Railway Ticket Scam: IIT Graduate Creates Faster Rail Ticket Booking App Than IRCTC, Arrested For Fraud

IIT Kharagpur officials did not wish to talk about it but a faculty, not willing to be named, said, it had nothing to do with the “pro-Centre” or “anti-Centre” policy of the premier educational institute.

“Our policy is not to allow any programme which may trigger tension, division and untoward incident within the campus.

“The researchers are free to organise the programme outside the campus,” he said.

The spokesperson of the research body said that it would have been a general academic discourse on the issue of identity and citizenship without directly referring to the controversy involving the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, National Register of Citizens and the National Population Register.

“We had invited three speakers and none of them were politicians,” she said.

Ranjit Sur, a rights activist who had been invited as a speaker, said, “This is a knee-jerk response from IIT Kharagpur which shows they are not willing to allow debate on contemporary issues on the campus.

With PTI inputs