Universities must keep freedom to express thoughts alive: Ram Naikhttps://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-news-india/universities-must-keep-freedom-to-express-thoughts-alive-ram-naik/

Universities must keep freedom to express thoughts alive: Ram Naik

“It is the responsibility of the university to give strength to different thoughts, and debate but at the same time dignity and duty should also be taken care of,” Naik told reporters.

Ram Naik, Ram Naik on JNU, JNU row, JNU protest,  JNU news, vaicharik azadi, kanhaiya kumar, india news, nation news
UP Governor Ram Naik.

Uttar Pradesh Governor Ram Naik Monday said it was the responsibility of the universities to keep “vaicharik azadi (freedom to express thoughts) “ alive on campus but added that such freedom should be exercised with “responsibility and “dignity”.

“It is the responsibility of the university to give strength to different thoughts, and debate but at the same time dignity and duty should also be taken care of,” Naik told reporters here.

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He was responding to queries on issue of “nationalism” being raised amid ongoing row at JNU. Naik said university is a place where students develop their thought process and so ideological debate and discussions should be promoted.

In an apparent reference to the time when Emergency was imposed in the country, Naik said: “You had seen what had happened when restrictions were put on freedom of thoughts. Once people were sent to jail for one-and-a-half years just because they had kept the editorial columns in their newspapers blank”.

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The Governor, meanwhile, said he has written a letter to Union HRD Minister Smriti Irani seeking details of the guidelines issued to the central universities for hoisting national flags in all the central universities.

“It is a good thought. There is absolute freedom to hoist national flag and any citizen of this country can do so, but it has to be done in a proper way with respect and dignity. Thus, with the idea to bring about uniformity in hoisting of national flag at state universities too, I have written to the HRD Minister to get details of the guidelines given to central universities,” Naik said.

Naik said he will discuss the guidelines with the Vice-Chancellors of state universities. “Probably, we could come out with better method to bring uniformity,” he added.

Earlier, while detailing the achievements of girl students in state universities on the eve of International Women Day, he said that out of 25 universities, convocation of 20 had been held during which 40 per cent degrees went to girls while out of 1,196 medals, girl students bagged 67 per cent of medals.

He further informed that out of 191 chancellor medals, 118 were taken by girl students. Moreover, out of 964 gold medals given in different universities, 609 were bagged by girls.

Naik said that for all round development of the country, it is the demand of time to provide reservation to women in politics as well.

Naik said a good number of posts for teachers were lying vacant in universities and steps were being taken to fill them.

On the proposal to increase tenure of vice-chancellors from three to five years, he said that it was still under consideration of the state government.

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