THE STUDENTS’ union of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) has threatened the university authorities of serious consequences if anyone with “RSS ideology” attend its March 7 convocation ceremony, where President Ram Nath Kovind is the chief guest.
In a letter to AMU Vice-Chancellor Tariq Mansoor, union secretary Mohammad Fahad has referred to a statement by Kovind in 2010, when he was a BJP leader. Addressing media, Kovind had sought that the Justice Ranganath Misra Commission, which had recommended inclusion of Muslim and Christian converts among Scheduled Castes, be “scrapped”. Asked how Sikh Dalits could enjoy the quota privilege in the same category, Kovind had said: “Islam and Christianity are alien to the nation.”
In a letter, Fahad has said: “The statement made by Ram Nath Kovind against minorities is still in the mind of AMU students. Despite this, the student union respects the post of the President and welcomes him to the convocation ceremony. We also remind him that he is no more a member of RSS or BJP, but President to 1.25 crore people… He should maintain dignity of the post.”
“Also, we warn the AMU administration that if it invites any RSS man along with the President, it should be ready to face consequences. This university will not tolerate any RSS man, (those who demolished) Babri Masjid or Gandhi’s killers on its premises,” he added.
Student union president Maskoor Ahmad Usmani said they will not let any politician enter AMU. “In 2010, Kovindji gave a statement saying that Muslims and Christians are aliens in this country. It had hurt our feelings. He was a political person then, but now he is the President and the visitor of the university. We welcome him. But we would not let any other political person enter the university… no matter from which political party,” he added.
M Shafey Kidwai, AMU member in-charge of public relation said only the President has been invited for the convocation. “In a letter to the V-C, the union secretary has said that no one from the RSS of BJP should be invited, otherwise, they would stage protest. But we have only invited the President… this is above any political activity… After a gap of 32 years, a President is coming here, it a big moment for us,” he said.
He said, “If anyone comes as part of the convoy, we cannot intervene.” Aligarh SSP Rajesh Kumar Pandey said he has spoken to the V-C and stern action will be taken against those who would try to disturb law and order during the President’s visit.