Visva Bharati Evicts Student from Hostel for ‘Circulating’ VC’s R-Day Speech on CAA, Teachers Demand Rollback

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Kolkata: The Visva Bharati University Faculty Association (VBUFA) has demanded immediate roll back of varsity’s decision to evict a student from hostel for recording Vice Chancellor Bidyut Chakrabarty’s Republic Day speech where he had hinted towards the need of Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA).

In his speech, Chakrabarty had said that even though anti-CAA protesters were reading out the Preamble of the Constitution, the Constitution itself was “brought into effect by minority votes”, with only 293 members of the Constituent Assembly drafting it.

The speech was circulated on WhatsApp following which the university formed an internal inquiry panel suspecting that it was done to malign the image of the varsity and the VC.

The panel found that the video was shared by Bijiu Sarkar, a student of BA History Honours and it was decided to evict him from the hostel.

Security officer Supriya Gangopadhyay was also transferred from Santiniketan to ‘Granthana Vibhaga’ in Kolkata campus.

The VBUFA Sudipta Bhattacharyya said that the action was a violation of the fundamental right of expression as VC’s speech was made in the public domain. “The speech was not made in any of his personal domain. Therefore it cannot be treated as violation of any IT Act,” Bhattacharyya said.

The association condemned the action taken against the student. “The proctor issued his one page hand written order where the video was considered as ‘disruptive and defamatory’. Nothing was added over and above VC’s speech. If there is some ‘disruptive and defamatory’ content in it, the VC is himself responsible. In fact, in the first part of the order it was acknowledged that the video was ‘later used to defame the Vice-Chancellor on social media,” he added.

Visva Bharati university has been in news lately after a standoff between administration and Left wing students after they questioned the VC over his stand on various issues, including the raging debate over new citizenship law.

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