COIMBATORE: Bharathiar University has issued an order to its students, teaching and non-teaching staff, warning them of disciplinary action if they provided news to the media.
BU registrar P K Manoharan, in a circular dated May 27, said: The teaching staff, officers, non-teaching staff and students are directed not to pass on or send any unauthentic news related to the university orally or in writing to the electronic media/press directly. All press releases should be routed through the registrar by the public relation office only.”
If any damage is caused to the name of the university by violating the above instructions, it will be viewed very seriously and disciplinary action initiated against the person concerned under the provisions of Chapter XVIII, Statute 15, 8(b)(ii) and (c).
However, the academic community has strongly condemned the university for the statute.
“This circular curtails the right to freedom of expression and strangulates the right to freedom of press. It warrants strong condemnation. The Vice Chancellor should officially withdraw this circular,” said C Pichandy vice president of the Association of University Teachers (AUT).
“The AUT will not be a mute spectator to these violations and we will rise against the V-C if he continues to act in an undemocratic manner,” he added.
“As per rules, no government servant can give interview to media, but association leaders have been exempted. They can submit their memorandum highlighting grievances to the Vice Chancellor and they can reveal these to the media,” said V Kubendran, president of the Bharathiar University Teachers Association.