Guards 'rescue' VC's effigy from DUTA

Protest interrupted

Members of the Delhi University Teachers’ Association could burn only one effigy on Wednesday after security guards, under orders from DU officials, took away parts of two other effigies while the protesters were assembling them.

DUTA is on an indefinite relay hunger strike for the last 22 days, demanding a dialogue with the DU vice chancellor over academic changes in the university.

“University officials have stooped to this level. This is such a derogatory work for the security guards. They are here to provide security,” said DUTA member Abha Dev Habib.
Security guards and policemen were seen running away with head and legs of effigies of the VC and former Union human resource development minister Kapil Sibal.

A human chain was formed later to assemble another effigy, and the venue was packed with students and teachers. A student said they have no idea what is going on in the university.

“When we ask our teachers, they have no answer. Why are the changes taking place one after the other without giving any breathing space? We are already burdened with the semester system, and now the overhauling into the four-year graduation programme,” the student said.

However, a senior official denied that students had participated in the strike.

“I did not see any student. Teachers could not even burn the effigies, so they were burning newspapers. How they are behaving is sad,” an official said. He said the Delhi University Students’ Union (DUSU) has withdrawn support from the strike.

“We have accepted DUSU’s demand to extend the date for paying examination fee. DUSU is not a part of this strike anymore,” he added.

However, DUTA members said no official confirmation came from DUSU about the withdrawal.

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