Patna, Dec. 13: Education can wait in Patna University, not agitation.
Students affiliated to Nationalist Congress Party today disrupted academic and administrative work at the university to press their demands. They closed down the entrance gate of the university and ransacked furniture outside the offices of the university officials, including that pro-vice-chancellor S.I. Ahson.
The agitating students were demanding seat reservation for candidates who have excelled in sports, art and cultural activities.
Nationalist Congress Party student leader Tanveer said: “We demand that a special quota be made for students who have excelled in sports, arts and cultural activities. While most universities are making efforts to promote sports, arts and culture, the Patna University is looking backwards.”
The Patna University has stopped reserving seats for students who have excelled in these fields for B Ed and M Ed admissions this year.
The protesters marched to the main campus of the university shouting slogans against the university authorities. Then they forced the university employees to vacate the administrative offices on the campus. The agitating students then went to the directorate of distant education on the university campus and forced the classes to be stopped.
As the situation was spinning out of control, the university authorities called police. But the agitators had left the campus before a team from Pirbhore police station could arrive.
Directorate of distance education head Prashant Dutta said: “The university authorities should sit down with the students and discuss the issue. In any case the students should not resort such to measures.”
No one seems to be too bothered about continuous disruption to academic and administrative work at the university said a source. Earlier this year, the Grade IV employees of the university had gone on a 50-day strike over various demands, crippling classes. Now the students are hurting themselves by going on strike. A number of strikes by university students over the past six months have disrupted classes and the smooth functioning of the university. Last week, members of National Students’ Union of India had shut down the university protesting against alleged anomalies in the admission process of B Ed and M Ed courses.
Tammana, a member of Nationalist Congress Party, said: “Student leaders affiliated to various organisations met the university authorities and the human resource development minister to seek redress for the anomalies in the B Ed admission. But no action has been taken till now.”
On December 10, a delegation of students had met human resource development minister P.K. Shahi and informed him of the anomalies.