The Jadavpur University ( JU) campus witnessed hectic efforts on Friday to end the impasse over the university authorities’ controversial decision to scrap the time-tested entrance test system, with the vice-chancellor meeting with the governor, who is also the university’s Chancellor ~ though without much visible effect.
The decision to conduct direct admission was yet to be fully implemented as the students continued to pile pressure on the JU authorities to reconsider the decision to cancel the entrance test.
A day after the Governor sought a report from the vice-chancellor (VC) Mr Suranjan Das, the latter visited Raj Bhawan on Friday and a meeting was held this evening. Although he refused to comment on the issues discussed with the Chancellor, sources said that the VC delivered an oral report to the Governor, but was asked for a written report on the matter.
Earlier, the VC visited state education minister Partha Chatterjee’s residence this morning. His surreptitious exit from there raised several eyebrows. His car was spotted coming out without him, while he was seen going out from the back door.
There were rumours circulating at the university campus both among teachers and students, about the VC putting in his papers by tonight. As the VC refused to make any comments, the matter could not be confirmed.
Meanwhile, the JU campus underwent several stages of protests on Friday not only by students, but also by teachers as well, as members of the Jadavpur University Teachers’ Association (JUTA) boycotted their teaching duties from 12 to 3 p.m.
Some of the students also said that the VC has refused to come to the premises and anyone wanting to meet him would have to go to Salt Lake.
Meanwhile, Jadavpur University Teachers’ Association (JUTA) is gearing up to go the legal way and discussions with lawyers are on to approach the court if the authorities’ decision is not reversed. Elaborating on the issue, Mr Keshab Bhattacharjee, president of JUTA, said “We are going to take the legal route simultaneously. However, a final decision on the same is expected by the end of next week or so. Also, a decision has been reached at the stakeholder’s meeting on Friday that a silent rally will be held within the campus on 10 July at around 2 pm protesting the authorities’ decisions.”
The JUTA president also said that a convention representing all the stakeholders including teachers, non-teaching staff and other employees along with students will be held on 11 July. The teachers present at the stakeholder’s meeting this afternoon also decided to stay away from the process of counselling and verification.
Lamenting over the recent chain of events, Sutapa Sengupta, an associate professor of Bengali at Jadavpur University said, “There are clearly no academic reason for the decision. Unless the academic reasons are explained to us, we will stay away from the admission process.”
The university registrar’s request to the students not to go on hunger strike and give time till 4 p.m. Monday was refused. A batch of 20 students started a hunger strike from tonight.
The students demanded an immediate meeting of the JU Executive Council and decided to back the previous decision of the Executive Council for considering the entrance test marks and Class XII board examination marks in a 50:50 ratio for admissions to university courses.