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AMU V-C’s wife reaches out to protesting students

Hameeda Tariq’s effort goes in vain as the students refuse to give the V-C a clean chit

Hameeda Tariq, wife of Aligarh Muslim University Vice-Chancellor Tariq Mansoor, on Tuesday reached out to protesting students in the university, and expressed “regret” over the injuries they suffered during the police action on December 15 when their protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act allegedly turned violent.

“As a mother, I can feel the trauma you faced,” said Hameeda Tariq, a paediatrician, while talking to a group of students at the sit-in protest site. Apart from a roll-back of the CAA, the students are demanding the resignation of the V-C and the Registrar.

She asked the students to give the V-C the “benefit of the doubt”.

“Sometimes, a person takes an action without knowing its repercussion. It should not be construed as wilful,” she could be heard saying in a video while referring to the permission given by the university administration to the police to enter the university on December 15. She said the police were called to restore public order and not to enter a hostel.

However, when the students refused to give the V-C a clean chit and said his one decision changed the course of a peaceful protest, she said, if they were “asking for the resignation,” they should hold a dharna at the President House in Delhi. “She said students should not ask for the resignation of the V-C and instead, concentrate on the ensuing exams,” said Faizul Hasan, former president of the AMU Students’ Union, (AMUSU), who was present during the meeting.

Faizul Hasan, former president of the AMU Students’ Union, said if the V-C was “regretful,” he should have come himself.

“She said students crossed the line of peaceful protest on December 15 which is not true,” said Mr. Hasan.

‘Part of education’

Another student requesting anonymity said students were focussing on their studies as well and the protest against the CAA-NRC was also part of their education. “I also wonder if they consider us as a family. Why the VC and his wife could not visit us together? She should know that if the balm is not applied on time, an injury could turn into a sore,” he said.

Meanwhile, Salman Imtiaz, president, AMUSU (2018-19), has appealed to the members of the AMU Court to take a serious note of the situation and asked for immediate intervention.

‘Suspicious people’

Apart from the events of the last 36 days which have “eroded the students’ faith in the university administration”, Mr. Imtiaz pointed out the presence of “suspicious people” on the campus. “Multiple pieces of evidence have emerged in the last seven days wherein suspicious people having police background are seen entering campus and questioning students. To date, the AMU administration has failed to find these people, though students have made the CCTV footage available,” he alleged. Afifullah Khan, proctor, AMU, denied any such development. “The former students who are wanted in vitiating the atmosphere of the campus get paranoid by the sight of any man in uniform,” he said.

FIR lodged

In a related development, Rajeev Kumar ‘Abhishek’, national vice-president of the Akhil Bhartiya Hindu Mahasabha, lodged an FIR on Tuesday against Magsaysay Award winner Sandeep Pandey for allegedly making inappropriate comments against Veer Savarkar during his lecture against CAA-NRC in AMU.

He has been booked under Section 153 (provocation with the intent of causing riots) and 505 (1)(b) (intent to cause fear among the public).

Hamza Malik, a representative of the Resident Doctors’ Association, which organised the lecture on Sunday, said, “Mr. Pandey did not make any personal comment on Savarkar. He only said what is there in public domain for years.”

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Printable version | Feb 19, 2020 9:07:46 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/amu-v-cs-wife-reaches-out-to-protesting-students/article30618373.ece

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