Jadavpur varsity students to hold referendum on VC’s removal

Kolkata: Jadavpur University students will hold a referendum Oct 30-31 in their bid to establish that students are unanimously demanding the resignation of Vice Chancellor Abhijit Chakrabarty.

They have been demanding removal of Chakrabarty since Sep 17 when university authorities allegedly ordered a police crackdown to break up a sit-in for an independent investigation into the alleged molestation of a female student inside a hostel.

“Many have said that 80 percent of students are not bothered about the issue but through the referendum, we will prove that all students stand unanimously in demanding the vice chancellor’s removal,” Gitashree Sarkar, general secretary of the univerity’s students’ union, told IANS Wednesday.

She said results will be declared Oct 31 and students across all disciplines will participate.

Thousands of agitating students and several faculty members led a massive rally Sep 19 in central Kolkata, demanding Chakrabarty’s removal and decrying police atrocities.

The incident had a ripple effect across the country with students and alumni holding smaller protest marches in cities like Delhi and Mumbai. Through social networking sites, the agitation brought together the Kolkata diaspora and university alumni in solidarity.

Amid the raging clamour for his removal, Chakrabarty, who was the interim VC, was given full-time responsibility by West Bengal Governor K.N. Tripathi, who is ex-officio Jadavpur University Chancellor, last month.

The state government has instituted a five-member probe panel headed by Calcutta University Vice Chancellor Suranjan Das.

Two university students and a former student have been arrested in connection with the alleged molestation.

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Free Press Journal