The meeting of Jawaharlal Nehru University’s Academic Council (AC) on Tuesday — the first one held after the February 9 incident--lasted for a very brief period. An hour and fifteen minutes, to be precise.
Vice-chancellor M. Jagadesh Kumar was forced to allow a discussion on the 13-day-old hunger strike. However, he "abruptly" ended the “peaceful” meet and walked out.
The administration later issued a statement saying that the meeting was not allowed to proceed by “a group of teachers and their student supporters who from the very beginning pressed their demand to discuss an issue that was not part of the agenda”.
The VC also alleged that some students had tried to “pull his shirt and pin him down”.
However, the students denied the allegations.
According to a report in The Telegraph, the meeting began at 2.30pm.
The students including the eight still on hunger strike chanted slogans outside the VC's office.
Three of the council's four student members - Kanhaiya Kumar, students' union vice-president Shehla Rashid and general secretary Rama Naga - insisted the strike be discussed urgently.
The VC finally allowed the discussion. The meet went on for an hour. And then, he abruptly adjourned the meeting and walked out around 4.15pm.
According to the report, Shehla Rashid followed the VC out saying: "Sir, you cannot leave. The blood of anyone who may die in the strike is on your hands."
It didn't work.
Escorted by about a dozen guards, the VC left with chairperson Amita Singh of the Centre for the Study of Law and Governance and the controller of examinations, Colonel Hanuman Sharma.
However, he faced more protests by the students who were standing outside.
The VC then headed for the administrative block 250 metres away and broke out into a jog. All this while, students kept protest and raising slogans: "Bhagoda VC waapas aao (Absconding VC come back)."
Facing charges of manhandling the VC, JNU students decided to put up a video to show that the accusations are false.
"VC took out press release saying that he was attempted to be assaulted by student which a blatant lie. In fact students formed a human chain around him to protect him against any such danger. As you can see, the guard with the VC is also carrying a camera and if it is true, we demand to release an evidence proving his accusations," the note on the YouTube video said.
Meanwhile, a majority of AC members stated in a resolution that the punishments should be immediately revoked.
“We are distressed by the fact that no deference was shown by the chair to opinions expressed by AC members, and the chair adjourned the meeting abruptly and unreasonably. We resolve that all unreasonable punishments arising from the February 9 incident are revoked. We resolve that the V-C immediately implement this resolution,” the statement said.
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