After five days of protest against Vice-Chancellor Sukh Pal Singh, students of Hidayatullah National Law University (HNLU) on Saturday decided that they will start a hunger strike from 8 am on Monday if the V-C does not resign. This comes a day after the Student Bar Association sent a letter to Singh expressing no confidence in him. The association stated that there would no longer be any interaction between him and the students.
On Saturday, a delegation from the association met HNLU Chancellor, Chief Justice of Chhattisgarh High Court A K Tripathi, and submitted a six-page letter explaining why they no longer have any confidence in the Vice-Chancellor.
Among reasons provided are allegations of financial irregularities, inaction against sexual harassment complaints, a lack of transparency, suppression of students and the student association, arbitrary hiring and firing of faculty members, centralisation of administrative power, and alleged maladministration.
Akansh Jain, a member of the Student Bar Association, said, “There are grave issues here. For instance, while the university says there is no money for students or the student body, we have found 13 bank accounts with Rs 98 crore. There are various (other) issues.”
Students received support from opposition parties. While Chhattisgarh Janata Congress leader Amit Jogi took part in the protest on Saturday and demanded transparency, Congress leader T S Singhdeo tweeted, “HNLU has been reduced to a shadow of its former glory by lack of vision, malpractices and an insensitive administration. The fight of HNLU students for the right to better education is just and we stand behind them…”