Students at Delhi University (DU), on February 26, held a protest march in north campus, demanding the vice chancellor to take immediate action against a law student accused of assaulting a guest faculty member.
Holding up banners which read: “DU against violence”, the students appealed the administration to take stock of the rampant hooliganism on the campus and take urgent measures to put an end to it.
On the day of the Pulwama attack, Devendra Barala, a third-year-student, tried to show a WhatsApp video of the incident to his teacher– who called it a propaganda material, the Times of India reported.
Angered at his response, Barala, on February 21, wrote a letter to the dean and the DU vice chancellor alleging that the teacher made insensitive remarks against the nation and mocked the CRPF officials detailing all the discussions in class and citing his refusal to watch the video. He also asked the administration to take disciplinary action against the teacher.
No action has been taken till now against the guest lecturer Ritesh Dhar Dubey who is also doing his PhD under supervision of Dean Law Faculty Ms. Ved Kumari pic.twitter.com/LeztEK26cL
— देवेन्द्र बराला (@DevendraBarala) February 24, 2019
However, the concerned faculty member denied all the claims. The Times of India quoted him as saying, “I didn’t say anything of the sort. He (Devendra Barala) assaulted me and then dragged me to the Maurice Nagar police station. But I managed to file an assault case against him.”
The joint student teacher’s consultative committee, on February 22, issued a showcause notice to Barala asking him to explain his behaviour and the dean said that they will constitute a committee to probe the matter.
Protest in DU
According to the Hindustan Times, on February 25, the Delhi University Teacher’s Association released a statement condemning the assault on the teacher saying, “The student’s “justification” for the assault, that the teacher’s questions hurt his nationalist sentiment, is completely unacceptable.”
The association appealed the vice chancellor to take necessary steps to protect the dignity of teachers and ensure their freedom of expression while referring to similar cases of assault in the past.
In the light of repeated attacks on Kashmiris after the Pulwama attack, they also urged the government to take adequate measures “to counter the threat to social harmony caused by divisive propaganda by certain sections.”
Consequently, the university students organised a protest march outside DU’s arts faculty demanding immediate action against those who indulged in the attack. Kawalpreet Kaur, Delhi state president of All India Students’ Association and law faculty student tweeted as saying:
Today's protest in Delhi University against the attack on Law Faculty teacher. The students of Delhi University are sending clear message, that we will not tolerate any violence!#ABVPKhabardar
— Kawalpreet Kaur (@kawalpreetdu) February 26, 2019
Featured image credit: Facebook