LUCKNOW: The group of students, protesting against the appointment of Prof Firoz Khan as assistant professor to the faculty of Sanskrit Vidya Dharam Vijnan (SVDV) at the BHU, resumed their sit-in on Monday evening. They accused the university authorities of not responding to their queries satisfactorily.
The protesting students even claimed that irregularities were committed by the varsity administration in the appointment process of Prof Khan. The classes at the department were disrupted during the day due to the dharna.
The protesters had suspended their 15-day-long ‘dharna’ against the appointment of Prof Khan on November 22 or 10 days. They had, however, resolved to continue the protest till the issue was settled to their satisfaction.
The students have been opposing the appointment of a non-Hindu as assistant professor in Sahitya (literature) department of the faculty since November 7, 2019. Prof Khan was appointed by BHU selection committee comprising Vice-Chancellor Prof Rakesh Bhatnagar on November 5, 2019.
The protestors had claimed they called off the dharna on the assurance from the head of the Sanskrit department under SVDV faculty that they would get a response within 10 days on their demand.
The group had claimed that a Muslim cannot teach Sanskrit at the Banaras Hindu University (BHU), a stand opposed by varsity officials and other students and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).
On resuming the dharna after 10-day wait to get a response from the authorities concerned, Chakrapani Ojha, the student leader spearheading the protests, claimed that of the five questions they had posed to the university administration over the appointment of Prof Khan, they were responded on only three. “So we have resumed the dharna,” said Ojha on Monday evening.
After the controversy, Prof Khan had appeared for the interview at the Ayurveda department on November 29. He was ranked at the top of the merit list. He is expected to appear in yet another interview for the post of assistant professor in Sanskrit department under Arts Faculty on Wednesday, December 4. Though his name figures on the merit list of the short listed candidates for the post, but the challenge is huge as there are 39 candidates for three posts under OBC category.