Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi on Tuesday condemned Allahabad University’s decision to dissolve the students’ union and suspending Akhilesh Yadav, the Vice President of Allahabad University for speaking against it.
The Vice President of Allahabad University Students' Union of NSUI, Akhilesh Yadav, was suspended from the university and blacklisted on July 13 for protesting against dissolution of students union in the University.
Calling it an attempt to curb students right, Yadav while addressing the media had said, “Both Central and State governments are continuously attacking the educational institution across the country. First, it was JNU, then HCU and now Allahabad University.”
Attacking the BJP government over dissolution of students’ union and suspension of Akhilesh, Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi tweeted on Tuesday, “the administration has suspended and black listed NSUI leader and Vice President of Allahabad university students' union for raising voice against dissolution of the students' union.”
“The BJP govt itself has come to power by being elected. Then why is it so scared of Students' elections and their voice? What can this be called else than dictatorship?” she added.
In a bid to suppress dissent in educational institutions, last week 96-year-old students’ union at Allahabad University was disbanded by the university administration and replaced with a students’ council which will not be elected through election.
Earlier elections were held to elect student representatives to the students union, now indirect elections will be held where students will elect class representatives who will in turn elect members of the students’ council.
“Pursuant to the Academic council resolution number 10/36, with effect from the session 2019-20, there would be student council in place of students’ union, read a notification from the University.
University stated that the move comes with a view to follow the recommendations of the Lyngdoh committee for university elections reform. “Sections 6.1.2 and 6.2.1 of the Lyngdoh committee report clearly recommend that only universities with a small campus and fewer students, like JNU and Hyderabad University, should be allowed to form their student unions via direct elections,” The university public relations officer Dr Chitranjan told The Print.
As a result, there will be no direct elections for student representatives starting with the 2019-20 academic year in the Allahabad University and affiliated colleges.
Students’ union at Allahabad University was among the oldest in the country. It was here that three former prime ministers, Gulzarilal Nanda, V.P. Singh and Chandrashekhar, and a former president – Shankar Dayal Sharma – honed their political skills.
Students at the university have protested the decision. “Today is a black day in the history of Allahabad University. We will continue our fight. We will go to the Ministry of Human Resource Development if we have to,” Shivam Singh, the general secretary of the current students’ union said to NewsClick.
Students at the campus have been protesting since June 25, a day after the academic council had made its recommendation to disband the students’ union. Now, the protests have intensified, with a few clashes between students and the police having been reported.