LUCKNOW: A post-graduate student of Banaras Hindu University refused to receive his degree at 101st convocation ceremony not only in protest of Citizenship (Amendment) Act but also against the arrest of BHU students who were arrested during the stir in Varanasi last week.
Rajat, MA (History), when called on stage to receive his degree, obliged the announcer but on reaching the stage refused to accept the degree as a mark of his protest against CAA. The chief guest on the occasion was a prominent economist and academician Vijay L Kelkar.
A day later, on Tuesday, Rajat claimed that he refused to receive the degree for he was upset with the arrest of anti-CAA protesters as many varsity students were also among them. Opposing CAA, Rajat also accused the varsity administration of turning a blind eye to those students who were languishing in the jail for the last four-five days.
Varanasi witnessed a surge of protests on last Thursday leading the district administration to arrest scores of protestors.
The main convocation ceremony held at Swatantrata Bhawan on the campus Monday was followed by respective degree-distribution ceremonies by various faculty in their own auditoriums on Tuesday.
In fact, Rajat was not alone in registering his protest by refusing to accept the degree, scores of Arts faculty graduates, on Tuesday, displayed posters of 19 students, who were arrested during anti-CAA stir in Chetganj area on December 19 and sent to jail. They were demanding immediate release of the students.
Meanwhile, there was another group of passed out students, who carried stickers on their convocation dress, in support of CAA and also shouted slogans on campus.
A group of students in convocation gowns displayed posters with names and photographs of the 19 anti-CAA protestors of BHU – 18 of main campus and one of IIT-BHU-- demanding their immediate release from jail.
After displaying posters at faculty premises. they thronged the Vishwanath temple on varsity campus, where they put their turbans, degrees with the posters under the statue of varsity founder Bharat Ratna Pundit Madan Mohan Malviya to register their protests against the arrests.
On the other hand, another group of students put out stickers containing slogans in support of CAA.
However, the university authorities feigned ignorance denying having any information of the incident.