The JNU administration on Friday fined six students, including student union office bearers Umar Khalid and G Suresh from the SFI, Rs 20,000 each and transferred their hostel with immediate effect. The punishment was given for “unlawful confinement” of top administrative officials in October last year when students were protesting the disappearance of JNU student Najeeb Ahmad.
The students’ academic process has also been blocked till they comply with the punishment. However, they have been given the option to appeal against the punishment to the vice-chancellor.
The order by the Chief Proctor issued to JNUSU joint secretary Tabrez Hasan, for example, reads, “The Enquiry Committee established charges against Mr Tabrez Hasan that he was present at the venue (Administrative Building) and had a substantial role to play in the unlawful confinement of the top officials of JNU. Mr Tabrez Hasan did not allow any officials to go out of the building and directed students to lie down in front of the exit door of the building as soon as officials tried to come out on the night of October 19, 2016 and continued till 2 pm on October 20, 2016. Mr Hasan, in his written depositions and oral statements, supported unlawful confinement of JNU officials.”
JNU chief proctor and Registrar did not respond to calls and texts from The Indian Express.
JNUSU general secretary Satarupa Chakrabory said, “While Najeeb’s assaulters were rewarded with only hostel transfer and the administration allowed them to roam around the campus freely, they preferred to take action and impose a huge fine on those who have been struggling to seek justice for him. This, once again, exposes the administration’s bias.”
Khalid, who was also fined by JNU in the February 9 case, said the option for appeal “will not change anything”. “We will just be embroiled in running around with paperwork… The punishments are atrocious and we will fight back,” he said.