| ABVP members protest at Patna College. Telegraph picture |
Patna University is all set to witness more protests with students’ unions backed by political parties deciding to seek referendum on the issue of vice-chancellor Y.C. Simahadri’s recent directive on various issues.
Based on feedback gathered by students’ referendum, the unions will plan their agitation. According to sources, the students will start their referendum process on August 6 from Patna College, Vanijya Mahavidhyalaya, and Darbhanga House. Followed by the referendum in these colleges, on August 7, there will be referendum at Patna Science College and Patna Law College. Next day, August 8, the referendum will be held at BN College, Patna Training College, Women’s Training College and College of Art and Crafts. The last day on August 9, students will move two more colleges — Magadh Mahila College and Patna Women’s College — seeking reaction of the vice-chancellor’s directives.
Four students organisations — All India Students’ Federation (AISF), All India Students’ Association (AISA), All India Democratic Students’ Organisation (AIDSO) and Chhatra RJD, the students’ wing of RJD — are working on the referendum. The college students will be asked to give their feedback on various issues in paper and drop at boxes.
Raj Sinha, a Chhatra RJD leader, said: “We have decided to seek students’ referendum on the issue, as we wanted to involve students on the issue.”
The issue on which various students bodies will seek the referendum will include the vice-chancellor’s directive on imposing a fine of Rs 50 on students for keeping absent from classes for a day, decision of not allotting hostels to students of Patna College and other colleges, banning protest at university campus by students, teachers and non-teaching staff and stopping the practice of double postgraduate degrees. The sources said the students’ body would get good response from referendum as there are key issues, which affect all.
However, dean (students’ welfare) K.N. Paswan said: “The university has taken few decisions for the betterment of students. If students have any genuine grievances, the university is ready to listen but will never bow before a few student leaders’ pressure tactics.”
Kumar Gaurav, a history student at Patna College, said: “Though the vice-chancellor has taken a few good steps for academic improvement in campus, there are some issues, which are not in the larger interest of students. One such issue is imposing Rs 50 fine on students for absenting college for a day.”
A senior university teacher on condition of anonymity said: “In last few months, Simahadri has taken some decisions, which are against the interest of teachers. He is treating teachers on same lines as students.”