Wednesday, March 20, 2019 | ePaper

DU authorities now say otherwise

What is the truth?

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Students of Science Faculty of Dhaka University formed a human chain in front of Mokarram Bhaban on Wednesday demanding safe campus.

Staff Reporter  :
The stand off over the quota movement continues, as students remained  defiant continuing the boycott of classes and examinations and calling upon the government to fulfill the Prime Minister's pledge to abolish the quota system in the government job.
The government on the other hand is using all threats to break the movement  using police and restricting students movement within the campus in the name of restraining entry of outsiders who in the words of the varsity authority are political infiltrators to mislead the movement.
Many believe the government may be waiting for a crack down on the quota movement at an opportune time but many also fears it may backfire given the mass support behind the quota movement. The brutal attacks by BCL men on the quota leaders are the ominous sign of bigger mishap sooner or later.     
The varsity authority on Monday issued a statement saying they would set up check posts at all important points to be guarded by its own security men to stop the entry of outsiders.
But it came under sharp criticism from the civil society who saw rat in the decision to stop free internal movement of students within the campus to run the quota movement and also stop students and teachers from outside public and private universities to joint the movement.
But surprisingly the Dhaka University has issued another press statement on Wednesday claiming that they have not made any such decision to stop entry of outsiders in the face of criticism that a public university can't be sealed from visitors of any sort. The varsity authorities now speak otherwise in contravention of its earlier decision made public by press statement.  
DU varsity Vice Chancellor Prof Akhtaruzzaman earlier this week also  equated the agitating students as new militants only   to take back his statement two days later saying the press misquoted him. It shows the unrest within the varsity management how to help the government to tackle the quota movement while going against the common cause of the general students.   
Students of Dhaka University (DU) continued the boycott of classes and
examinations yesterday in demand for the arrest of Chatra League activists who attacked the quota reformists students at many places and injured and maimed them and forced out og hospitals at many places.
They also formed human chain in the campus demanding release of arrested students and withdrawal of false cases against them; which aimed at freighting the students to silence their movement, they alleged.  
Students held a human chain at the Science Faculty building also attended by some teachers under the banner holding placards that read "hammer is for nail not for student", " we want safe campus", " we are your students why not taking responsibility to protect us from BCL attacks."
At the human-chain Professor of Mass Communication and Journalism Department Fahmidul Haque said, quota reform movement was going on for a long time. It is a rightful movement of students. We stand by them only when students come under attack. We are consciously standing beside them.
He said it is strange students who were attacked and beaten by BCL men were also arrested and tortured and now put on remand but the perpetrators are not brought to justice.  
Fahmidul also said, we noticed that our university administration and teachers' association always stands beside the government; not by the students. They have lost their identity and personality. "We urged the government to fulfill students logical demand and assist us to go back class room", he added.
Another report said students holding a human chain in front of the Sociology Department came under threat from a departmental teacher - AKM Jamal Uddin who told students to break the chain or face police action.
He took pictures of the protesting students, threatened them with consequences and to call police if they do not stop boycotting classes, claimed the students.
"If I think you are barring my path, then I will call the police. I will call the proctorial team, now it's up to you," he said, according to an audio recording.
"I will take my classes and I would take steps as per regularities if you do not take seat in my classes," Professor Jamal said.
He said, "the university will be run as per the rules." He also told the boycotting students that it is not the university's duty to get a student released from police custody. You go to the high court and get a lawyer for him. If you manage to do so then the department would provide the cost," Prof Jamal told the students. Earlier he also called upon the government to turn down the demand for reforming the quota system as it comes from anti-liberation quarters.
Some Chhatra League activists of DU's Surja Sen hall had earlier handed Moshiur,
a quota reform leader of the Sociology Department over to police after beating him on
July 2 . Later, he was shown arrested in the case filed over vandalising the DU VC residence.

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