Twenty days after an incident of alleged molestation was reported in Jadavpur University, four days after police allegedly assaulted students protesting against authorities’ inaction in the issue and a day after thousands of students hit Kolkata streets to “make themselves heard”, state Education Minister Partha Chatterjee on Sunday afternoon met the family of the victim.
Accompanied by Trinamool Chhatra Parishad president Shankudev Ponda, Chatterjee spent about an hour speaking to the victim’s family. The victim’s family members declined to divulge the details of the conversation, but said Chatterjee had asked about the girl’s health and had asked why she felt insecure. They added that Chatterjee wanted to know why the victim’s family was not happy with the investigation being carried out by the internal complaints committee of the university.
Adding to the mounting pressure on the state government, members of West Bengal College and University Teachers’ Association (WBCUTA) organised a procession on Sunday. “We took out the procession from Dakshinapan at Dhakuria to 8B bus Stand at Jadavpur. JU professors, along with professors of other colleges, some ex-V-Cs and former lecturers participated in the procession. Besides resignation of the V-C, we also demand a departmental inquiry into the alleged molestation and police crackdown and that all offenders should be booked,” said Tarun Patra, vice president, WBCUTA.
Protesting students, who met West Bengal Governor Kesari Nath Tripathi on Saturday, said a decision on lifting class boycott on the campus would be taken at a meeting on Monday. “There will be a general body meet tomorrow (Monday) which would see participation from JU students as well as representatives of different colleges which took part in the procession on Saturday. Our next course of action would be decided in that meeting,” said a second year postgraduate student of English.
Meanwhile, a group of protesting students have chosen Gandhigiri over outrage.
The students went to meet V-C Abhijit Chakraborty at his Salt Lake residence with a flower bouquet and a ‘get well soon’ card. Although they could not meet the V-C, they left the card and flowers at his doorstep.