The Jawaharlal Nehru University Teachers’ Association (JNUTA) Wednesday unanimously passed a motion ‘derecognising’ Registrar Bupinder Zutshi, has “completed 62 years”. The JNUTA said according to the statutes of the university, which prohibit anyone from continuing after the age of 62, Zutshi could no longer continue on his post.
The JNUTA also passed a motion expressing no confidence in a high-level inquiry committee set up by the university to look into the controversy following the February 9 event on the campus, where anti-national slogans were allegedly raised.
“JNUTA has decided to de-recognise the officiating Registrar from today as he completed 62 years today, which is the actual age of retirement for any regular Registrar in the university as per the statutes,” said JNUTA secretary Bikramaditya Choudhary. He also read the letter which the JNUTA wrote to the vice chancellor.
“To the surprise of everyone, he (Zutshi) purposefully leaked his deposition to the inquiry committee before media. The official, who is supposed to be the repository of the records of the university, violates the basic requirement and acts against the university. His act is not only morally untenable but also legally questionable,” read Choudhary.
Professor Ranjani Mazumdar read the motion, which was passed unanimously “This house declares that it ceases to recognise the acting registrar as an officer of the JNU. The house demands that the VC do the same and remove Professor Zutshi from that position and also withdraw the order appointing him as nodal officer of the university.”
Associate Professor Jaivir Singh also read a motion on the inquiry committee. “What has gone on since February 11 in the name of the inquiry committee is nothing less than a travesty is beyond doubt. Neither an honest uncovering of the truth, nor the upholding of the principles of justice can be outcomes of that process…”
JNUTA president Ajay Patnaik also informed students about students Umar Khalid and Anirban Bhattacharya, who were arrested on sedition charges following the February 9 event.
“Umar and Anirban are fine. They send you their thanks for the support the teachers and students have demonstrated. They are in fine health and fine frame of mind. They’ve gone through, not physical torture, but a lot of verbal abuse by the Special Cell,” he said.
Meanwhile, the JNUSU has decided to take out a march to Parliament on March 15 demanding the release of Umar and Anirban. They will also hold a protest on March 11 when the committee submits its report.
Another nationalism class in JNU
Economist and professor emeritus of Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) Prabhat Patnaik on Wednesday said that treating nationalism as a homogenous category was “wrong”. The nationalism adopted by third world countries like India was “inclusive nationalism”, he said.
He was delivering the 16th nationalism lecture on “What it means to be national” at the university’s administrative block.
Patnaik also talked about how the discourse of nationalism could be shifted. “Any thinking must be associated with raising questions… in any society, in any given time, there will be people holding different kinds of views. If those views are suppressed on grounds of being anti-national, then you’re ipso facto suppressing thinking,” he said.
Complaint against Kanhaiya, JNU prof
A complaint has been filed in Vasant Vihar police station against JNUSU president Kanhaiya Kumar over remarks allegedly made by him during an event on Tuesday. The complaint, lodged by Shivam Chhabra of Maurya Enclave and Pareekshit Dagar of South Ex – Part II, alleged that Kumar and JNU professor Nivedita Menon had made “anti-national” statements. “We have received the complaint… no FIR has been registered yet. We are looking into the matter,” said a police official. ENS