Students across various campuses in the country are peeved over varied reasons as various agitations in recent times suggest. The case is no different in the English and Foreign Languages University, Hyderabad, where students are upset over the recent moves by certain forces to disrupt and destroy public education institutions, free spaces of thoughts and students' movements across the country. Underlining their fears even a bid to raised a symbolic human chain as a protest was neutralised with the intervention of the police.
The administration called police on to the campus before the march planned by the Joint Action Committee (JAC) even started as per the scheduled time on November 23 afternoon.
Though the JAC had obtained the permission of the Assistant Commissioner of Police to form a human chain peacefully and express their dissent outside the campus, the EFLU administration likely called the police, and asked them to revoke the nod. Proctor T. Samson warned the students who gathered peacefully in front of the library, from where the march was supposed to begin.
“We are speaking for JNU, for every campus that is raising its voice right now, for Fathima Latheef, for public education, for the 120 schools in Telangana that were shut down, and for every institutional injustice that students across the country are fighting at the moment. Now they are here halting us, wasting our time, even though our protest has nothing to do with the EFLU administration. They are threatening us with random ordinance numbers without clarifying the source, or what it says,” charged the Joint Action Committee and the students gathered in front of gate no. 2 of the campus.
(JNU or the Jawaharlal Nehru University was the scene of a massive protest by students over hike in hostel fees recently. Fathima Latheef, a student of IIT, Madras, reportedly killed herself in her hostel room amid charges she was upset with the conduct of her teachers.)
JNU Students' Union has also opposed the high-handedness of the authorities in foiling a planned protest by the EFLU students.
“The JNUSU condemns in the strongest possible terms the actions of the Hyderabad City Police and the EFLU administration, who on 23rd November attempted to stop democratic protests in EFLU, Hyderabad, in solidarity with the movement in JNU against fee hike by calling the police into campus, threatening the protesting students with proctorial actions, and in a most shameful manner locking the gates of the university to prevent students' protest from leaving the university. The JNUSU renews its commitment to building larger solidarities across the country against fee hike and the privatisation of education," states a press note from JNUSU.
The upset EFLU students have now demanded the immediate removal of police from campus. They also want the university administration to confer with the students' council over the deployment of police on campus anytime. Students also oppose attempts made by guards to disperse any kind of student gathering and record any kind of student activity.
The students also want the university authorities to share with them latest rules and regulations. A physical copy of the above should be handed over to the students ‘council immediately and should be made available on the EFLU website at the earliest,' the students' demanded.
Students gathered at gate no.2 to hear from the proctorial board regarding their demands. They dispersed at around 10 pm after getting verbal assurance from the administration that they would look into students' concerns.