Protest ends, BHU Sanskrit department reopens

Protest ends, BHU Sanskrit department reopens

The protesters, mostly from the RSS-affiliated student's union ABVP, have been demonstrating against Feroze Khan's appointment, saying only a Hindu can teach Sanskrit at the university in Uttar Pradesh's Varanasi.

A group of Banaras Hindu University students protesting against the appointment of a Muslim professor at the Sanskirt literature department ended their 'dharna' on Friday.

The university had announced on Thursday that classes at the department would resume, indicating that the stir against the appointment of assistant professor Feroze Khan had ended.

"The Faculty of Sanskrit Vidya Dharma Vigyan, Banaras Hindu University, has reopened," the BHU tweeted on Thursday.

But the protest by a small group, mostly from the RSS-affiliated student's union ABVP, continued for some hours for the 15th day on Friday till an announcement by the agitating students themselves. The group had insisted that a Muslim cannot teach Sanskrit, a stand opposed by other students.

The dharna was called off following an assurance by the dean of the Sanskrit literature department.

According to BHU student and Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) leader Chakrapani Ojha, the dean of the Sanskrit literature department met the students on Friday and assured them of an inquiry.

Ojha said they would again resume their protest if no action was taken within 10 days into the "irregularity" in the appointment process of the assistant Sanskrit professor in the SVDV.

Meanwhile, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh said it did not agree with the students' protests.

In a statement, RSS leader Jai Prakash Lal said a meeting was held with organisation leaders in Varanasi, in which they held that the opposition by a section of BHU students was wrong.

Lal added that they do not support the students staging dharna in the campus on this issue.

A BHU spokesperson said several rounds of talks were held on Thursday in the vice chancellor's office by students, teachers, chief proctor.

It was decided to open the classroom and hold classes from the next day. Soon after the meeting, the classroom's locks were opened, the spokesperson said.

Earlier, some of the students also burnt the effigy of the vice chancellor to protest against the appointment of Khan. The protesters had demanded for a high-level probe of CBI in the matter.