NEW DELHI: JNU teachers today rallied behind its protesting students and questioned the university's decision to allow the police crackdown on the campus even as they appealed to the public not to "brand" the institution as "anti-national."
As a row over an event at the campus of the Jawaharlal Nehru University(JNU) against the hanging of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru raged, the teachers also come out in support of the students union president Kanhaiya Kumar, who is in police custody on sedition charges, saying even if the students have done anything wrong, it is an issue of "indiscipline" and not "sedition".
"It was wrong on the university's part to allow the police crackdown on campus before completion of a probe by the university's proctorial committee in connection with the event. The administration mishandled the issue," the teacher's association JNUTA president Vikramaditya told a press conference.
"Neither Kanhaiya was the organiser, nor he was associated with the event. He went their just to intervene when the argument between ABVP members and organsiers started heating up. But he has been framed," he added.
The teaching faculty members, who openly came out against the varsity administration for allegedly "mishandling" the issue, also claimed that the internal mechanism of the university seems to be completely "subverted" and autonomy of the institution stands "surrendered".
"Isn't it unfair to brand the university as anti-national which has stood as an epitome of academics and democratic culture. Why tarnish its image by calling it a home to anti-nationals?
"We have taught here for years, we know what it is to be at JNU. We appeal to the public to look beyond the present controversy and not to associate the "adjective" anti-national with JNU," said a Social Science professor, who did not wish to be identified.
A professor of the Linguistics department said the "university is doing an inquiry, police is probing the case, the Delhi Government has also ordered a magisterial inquiry.
Why can't we wait to see how the situation unfolds? Why brand the university as a ground for terrorists?"