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7 November, 2019 00:00 00 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 7 November, 2019 01:28:16 AM

No let-up in JU unrest

Students stick to VC removal plea, defy order to vacate halls
Our Correspondent, JU
No let-up in JU unrest
Students of Jahangirnagar University continue to agitate on the campus yesterday for VC Farzana Islam’s ouster. Focus Bangla Photo

Despite the authorities’ order to vacate the halls before 3:30pm yesterday, defiant students of Jahangirnagar University (JU) continued with their demonstrations to push for the removal of vice-chancellor Prof Farzana Islam for what they claimed her unbridled corruption and mismanagement. They, however, halted their programmes until 12 noon today and vowed to stay in their dormitories.

President of the Hall Provost Committee Professor Bashir Ahmed confirmed the fact to The Independent yesterday. “We have decided to shut all the canteens and food stores under the dormitories and adjoining shops. We took the decision as the syndicate decided to shut the university,” he said.

Spokesperson of the protesters Nazir Amin Chowdhury Joy said, “We will withdraw our movement for tonight. We will try to stay in the dormitories. If the university bars us from staying there, we will stay in the adjoining areas near the campus and will continue further movement from tomorrow (today).”

Earlier, the students and teachers on the platform ‘Jahangirnagar Against Corruption’, staged a sit-in in front of the old registrar building around at 11pm. According to their pre-announced programme, at 10am, the protesters gathered at the ‘Murad Chattar’ of the university and brought out a rally.

The rally ended at the JU old registrar building after parading different streets on the campus. Addressing the programme, Professor Anu Mohammad said, “JU VC termed the attack of BCL on the general students ‘Upsurge’. But she shut all dorms to defend the real upsurge. She tried to convince the government that she was compelled to do this to resolve the crisis. It cannot be real solution.”

The vice chancellor has lost her legality to hold her post, he claimed. She is conducting the university like the government of Ayub Khan as she was appointed by the government’s decision that was totally opposite of the democratic system, added the professor.

Former Proctor of the university, Prof Tapan Kumar Saha said, “I worked as the Proctor of the University for four years but never needed to bring down special student organisations to stop any movement. So, why now!”  

Expressing regret over yesterday’s assault he said, I was saddened by yesterday's incident.  The vice-chancellor called it a ‘mass uprising’ after teacher and students were assaulted.  

“It is really unfortunate to be a student and teacher of this university after such activities. It is our responsibility to protect our university,” said the former proctor.  Expressing solidarity with the protesters, Professor Raihan Rayen, Professor Anu Mohammad, DU Professor Tamiz Uddin Khan, Professor Sohel Rana, General Secretary of Socialist Student Front of the Central Committee Nasir Uddin Prince, Secretary of Student Union Anik Roy, online activist Md Mirza addressed the programme, among others.

Later, over 300 of protesters brought out a rally and took position beside the VC’s residence. They were taking position there till filing this report.

Meanwhile, law enforcers have been deployed surrounding the residence of the vice chancellor. Additional security measures have been taken inside on the campus to tackle any unwanted situation, said JU Proctor A S M Feroz Ul Hasan. “As the syndicate decided to vacate dormitories, nobody can stay there. If any student violates the decision, we will take initiative,” he added.

However, most of the students have already left the dormitory.   

Embargo on all political activities

The university authorities have stopped all political activities in the campus. Students staying outside of the university cannot participate in any political activities after coming to the campus, said a press release from JU Public Relations Office.

However, the demonstrating students opposed the decision of the authorities. One of the protesters Mahthir Mohammad said, “Such a decision is a manifestation of the dictatorial attitude of the VC. By this, the VC is turning enemy of the university.”

Current students of the university have the right to come here and attend meetings at any time, he said adding that they will continue the movement.

“We are not obliged to accept any decision taken by the vice chancellor as we are not accepting her as VC now,” added the student.

Vow to continue protests

Meanwhile, the protesting students have announced their new programme for today at a press meet that was held at around 9pm.

They will besiege the administrative buildings in the morning and stage demonstration on the campus. Besides, they will stage a street concert beside the residence of the vice-chancellor in the evening.

President of JU Socialist Student Front Mahthir Mohammad announced their new programme at the press meet.




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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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