‘Liberal’ Ashoka Univ Crackdown: 2 Staffers Quit After Students Sign Petition On J&K

TWO senior members of the administrative staff have quit; an assistant professor is under pressure to leave and regulations have been revised to moderate all emails between alumni and students. Ashoka University in Sonepat, which advertises itself as a world-class “pioneering liberal initiative” that encourages students “to think and to question,” is roiled in a fractious debate over curbs on freedom of speech on campus.

The flashpoint: a July 25 petition signed by 88 members of the university, addressed to the J&K government and the Centre, condemning the violence after militant Burhan Wani’s death and calling for de-militarisation of the state and the conduct of a plebiscite. Signatories included students, alumni, two employees and one faculty member.