DU students, teachers call for Satyagraha

Published: Apr 27, 2011, 08:30 IST | Vatsala Shrangi

They have launched a non-cooperation movement against the authorities to protest the implementation of semester system

They have launched a non-cooperation movement against the authorities to protest the implementation of semester system

Dressed in all white, a large number of teachers and students of Delhi University (DU) are sitting outside Faculty of Arts on a silent protest. They say they have taken to this Gandhian way of protest and called for non-cooperation movement to protest against the University's decision to implement the semester system.


Be a rebel: Students made a human chain and walked around the
Vivekanand Statue at Faculty of Arts to protest against the
implementation of the semester system. Pic/Mid Day


The University's decision is being termed by the protesters as an assault on their dignity and freedom by the Vice Chancellor (V-C) and the university administration.  The students who have joined the protest say they are supporting their teachers as the cause was directly related to them.   

On Monday, angry protesters made a human chain and walked around the Vivekanand Statue at Faculty of Arts, carrying banners with slogans like 'Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere', 'DU administration down, down'. Later, a group of students proceeded to the V-C's office, where the Academic Council meeting was in progress, and staged a demonstration against the implementation of the semester system.

It was after the Academic Council (AC) of the university ratified the decision to implement the semester system in all the courses of the University, did the teachers come out in large numbers to oppose the decision.

The teachers claim that the AC meeting, followed by the meeting of the highest decision-making body of DU - Executive Council (EC) - was convened in a hurry, leaving less than 12 hours for the members to study the syllabi to be passed. This is the first time in the history of the university that meetings of three statutory bodies of the university have been convened within 24 hours.

"We are not against the semester system; it is the dictatorial approach towards its implementation that we are protesting against. It is a democratic institution, why should we be the puppets in the administration's hands," said Nandita Narain, a professor at Miranda House.

The AC consists of the V-C, Pro V-C, deans of faculties, heads of departments and elected members (teachers). With the AC giving the VC the right to bifurcate the courses of subjects, the semester system is all but through. The courses not passed by the Committee of Courses, so far include English (Honours), Economics (Honours) and Political Science (Honours).

"The AC is one of the supreme bodies of the university and it has been convened in violation of the university statutes. All the stakeholders need to be represented. The High Court had also asked the university to consult the students and yet we have no student representatives in the AC?'' said an elected AC member, Sheo Dutt.

The students believe that they were never consulted on the issue and were not briefed by any of the university officials over the matter. "Preparing for exams under the semester system is tough and puts more pressure on the students. We support teachers in their protest against the arbitrary moves of the university," said Joseph Mathew, a student at St Stephen's college.

International Sushi Day: Learn how to make mouthwatering Sushi at home from this Mumbai chef!

This website uses cookie or similar technologies, to enhance your browsing experience and provide personalised recommendations. By continuing to use our website, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy. OK