Chomsky to JNU V-C: why did you allow police on campus?

Photo: Courtesy Reuters

Maintains there is no credible evidence of seditious activities in the academic institution

Renowned thinker and academician Noam Chomsky has questioned the way administration at Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) handled the recent controversy on campus

In an e-mail to Vice-Chancellor M. Jagadesh Kumar, Mr. Chomsky has questioned the decision to allow police on the campus. “Many of us remain very concerned about the crisis in JNU, which was apparently created and precipitated by the government and university administration with no credible evidence of any seditious activities on campus. Why did you allow the police on campus when it is clear that this was not legally required?” the e-mail sent on Sunday read.

Students and teachers at JNU have also been protesting the alleged mishandling of the issue by the university administration and questioned the decision to allow the police on campus.

The administration, in its defence, has maintained that “the university was bound to do so”, even as protesting students and teachers contended that the matter was one of indiscipline and not sedition.

“I never invited the police to enter the campus and pick up our students. We only provided whatever cooperation was needed as per the law of the land. We only asked police to do whatever deemed fit,” the V-C had earlier said.

The university has also set-up a high-level committee to probe the issue. On the basis of the committee’s preliminary report, Kanhaiya Kumar and seven other students have been suspended. A final report is expected to be ready by February 25.

Mr. Chomsky, along with Nobel laureate Orhan Pamuk and 86 other academicians, has condemned “the culture of authoritarian menace that the present government in India has generated” and said that those in power are replicating the dark times of the oppressive colonial period and the Emergency.

The JNU Students’ Union president was arrested on February 12 after being charged with sedition and criminal conspiracy.

Courtesy: The Hindu



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