New Delhi: A section of Delhi University teachers have deplored the university's decision to observe June 29 as a working day despite the festival of Eid-ul-Adha, terming the move as “sectarian and insensitive”. However, DU said that June 29 has been marked as a working day to “complete all arrangements” prior to the next day's function where Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be the chief guest.
In a notification, the university also mentioned that the employees who wish to celebrate the festival on June 29 are exempted from attending the office. “The Valedictory Function of Centenary Celebrations is scheduled on Friday, 30 June 2023. With a view to completing all arrangements prior to the function, the University will be observed Thursday, 29 June 2023 as a working day for all the employees of the University.
"The employees who wish to celebrate the festival on 29th June 2023 are exempted from attending the office,” the notification said. A group of teachers called out the university administration for a “sectarian mindset, lack of sensitivity and deliberate attempt to isolate one community”. They have demanded the university retract the notification. In a statement, the Democratic Federation of Teachers said June 29 is a mandatory holiday for celebrating Eid-ul-Adha and has been notified in the Gazette of India. “Members of the Muslim community celebrate Eid-ul-Adha. Members of other communities join these celebrations. It (the notification) is a step that demands reproach and condemnation for its sectarian mindset, lack of sensitivity and deliberate attempt to isolate one community,” the statement said.
The university could have identified its volunteers for the unfinished tasks for the Valedictory function, the teachers' group said. “The list of Gazetted Holidays has been known to the University much before the year 2023. No emergent situation or calamity has struck. It is unlikely that the University Administration would have taken a similar step in case the concerned day had been Holi or Diwali. That would have figured in its mind while drawing any schedule,” the teachers alleged. “We demand that the University Administration retracts this undesirable notification,” they added.