The registrar of the University of Hyderabad on Friday issued a notice to the chief security officer of the varsity directing the guards to record any 'suspicious activities' on the campus.
In the order issued earlier in the day, the guards have been instructed to take photographs of the activities, videograph events, check identity cards, confiscate banned substances, conduct regular inspection of hostel rooms/playgrounds/open areas of campus on suspicious grounds or anything that goes against the rules and regulations to 'safeguard' the interests of the university.
The order which comes into force with immediate effect was issued hours before the demonstration call by the students union who had called for a protest gathering at the Velivada on Friday afternoon to agitate the 'illegal hostel and academic suspension' of ten students.
The Students’ Union has appealed all the students to join in to demand the revocation of suspension against 10 students and to reclaim a space of dissent.
It may be recalled that the administration of UoH on Wednesday suspended 10 students including two women students on charges of 'misconduct, physical and verbal assault on its officials.'
While three, including a PhD scholar, have been suspended for two years, seven others have been suspended for six months from academic programmes and hostels. The decision was based on the recommendations of a committee constituted on an incident that took place on the night of November 3 at the Men's Hostel-J when the wardens and the security staff conducted raids and found a woman student in one of the rooms. According to the university rules, women are not allowed in the men's hostels
The matter soon escalated and police had to be called in. On November 4, an inquiry committee was set up and it submitted its report on November 6.
The inquiry panel found Pratyush Nirjher, Atira Unni V (MA-sociology) and Sagnik Saha (PhD-history) guilty of “refusing to comply with rules, preventing officials from discharging their duties and indulging in verbal assault”, for which they were suspended for two years. Tinanjali Dam, a representative of the Gender Sensitisation Committee Against Sexual Harassment (GSCASH), along with six other students, was suspended for six months.
Pratyush Nirjher in an open letter replied to the show cause notice issued to him by the UoH warden.
After Rohith Vemula's death in 2016 brought out issues linked to discrimination and difficulties faced by students from disadvantaged backgrounds, University of Hyderabad is now back under the spotlight for gender segregation and discrimination, and infantilising adult students by imposing draconian rules.