Over a month after protests broke out in Banaras Hindu University (BHU) over his appointment, Firoze Khan on Monday resigned from the Faculty of Sanskrit following his appointment to the university’s Arts Faculty. The students, who had been agitating against the appointment of a Muslim to BHU’s Faculty of Sanskrit Vidya Dharma Vigyan (SVDV), celebrated the resignation by distributing sweets among the students and the staff.
In a letter dated December 10, Professor Kaushalendra Pandey, Acting Dean of the SVDV Faculty, wrote, “This is to inform you that Firoze Khan, who was appointed as Assistant Professor in the Literature Department of SVDV, has resigned on December 9, 2019. Students are requested to get back to their studies and examinations.”
BHU Public Relations Officer Rajesh Singh said Khan has joined the Sanskrit department in the Faculty of Arts. “He was offered positions in both the Ayurveda faculty and the Faculty of Arts. He has chosen to join the Faculty of Arts. He will soon start teaching there,” Singh told The Indian Express on Tuesday.
Shashikant Mishra, one of the students who had been leading the protests and the boycott of classes over Khan’s appointment, said, “We have been informed that Dr Khan has resigned. We have called off our protest,” said Mishra, 26, a PhD scholar at SVDV.
Another protesting student, Chakrapani Ojha, said, “I would like to thank Dr Khan for resigning from SVDV. We would like to congratulate him and hope that he succeeds in life. This was not a personal fight,” said Ojha, 28, also a PhD scholar at SVDV.
On Monday, the agitating students had threatened to boycott the semester exams that were scheduled to begin Tuesday. The examinations have been postponed to December 14, students said. Firoze Khan, who is currently on leave, could not be reached for comment.