The 10th of May, the 13th Day of the Hunger Strike by JNU Students in protest against the HLEC Report was also the day scheduled for a meeting of the Academic Council of JNU. Students and faculty had resolved to stage a massive protest. Student and Faculty members of the Academic Council had also resolved to forcefully present issues related to the current crisis in the university at the AC Meeting. The events of the day are presented here through a series of videos and photographs uploaded by different people from JNU.
[ Video by Samim Asgor Ali, taken from his Youtube Channel ]
They tell the story of how students were generous with their tormentor, the VC, Jagadeesh Kumar, and how he ran away.
One day, his backers, Smriti Irani, Rajnath Singh and even Narendra Modi, and all the goons in the RSS headquarters at Mahal, Nagpur and Jhandewalan, Delhi will have to run for cover in a similar fashion when faced with the ‘gift’ of the fruits of their actions.
The students gathered on hunger strike collected their meals from their hotel messes and placed them in front of the AC meeting venue as a ‘gift’ to the Vice Chancellor, JNU and the university administration.
[ Images by Om Prasad ]
Here, are images of the students’ gathering outside the venue of the AC Meeting.
[Photos by Azhar Amim]
Several students addressed the gathering. Here are two videos of Rama Naga and Shehla Rashid speaking.
[ JNUSU General Secretary, Rama Naga, speaking to the assembled students gathered outside the venue of the AC meeting before he and Shehla Rashid go into the AC meeting. Video by Samim Asgor Ali]
[ Shehla Rashid (JNUSU Vice President) speaks to the assembled students outside the venue of the AC meeting, before she and Rama Naga (JNUSU General Secretary) make their way into the meeting. Video by Samim Asgor Ali]
Then the AC meeting began.
Rama Naga (General Secretary, JNUSU) and Shehla Rashid (Vice President, JNUSU) were at first prevented from going into the meeting by security guards. But both students made their way in. Rama Naga, who remains on hunger strike for the past 13 days, was carrying with him a basket of fruits and a bouquet for the Vice Chancellor, Jagadeesh Kumar, who has not found the time, inclination or energy to visit the students on hunger strike even once. Rama Naga was able to ‘gift’ the fruits and flowers to the VC. Shehla recorded his generosity.
[Inside the AC Meeting. Video by Shehla Rashid, Vice President, JNUSU]
Unable to answer the points made by the overwhelming student and faculty members of the JNU Academic Council, the VC abruptly ended the meeting.
Subsequently, 52 JNU teachers, who are members of the Academic Council, tabled a resolution that read as follows.
The overwhelming sense expressed in the academic council meeting held on May 10th, 2016 is that the whole range of punishments meted out to students is excessive and that the harsher punishments such as rustication, suspension, banishment from campus and exorbitant fines should be immediately revoked.
We are distressed by the fact that no deference was shown by the Chair to the opinion of the AC members, and that the Chair adjourned the meeting abruptly and unreasonably.
We, the members of the Academic Council, resolve that all unreasonable punishments for the February 9th incident are revoked.
We resolve that the VC immediately implement this resolution.
And then, the VC, unable to bear the heat from his students and faculty, simply ran away. Eyewitnesses claim that he ran so fast that even his security guards found it difficult to keep pace with him. Here is a video of his escape, followed by a series of image grabs,
[Video by Azhar Amim, JNU Student]
The JNU VC’s escape did not go uncommented upon. Here are two Facebook status updates, here is one from Shehla Rashid.
And so ended a day of generous gifts, miserly responses, and a shameful get away. Who knows what will happen next? But this is how Jyothidas K.V. imagines the post-escape JNU VC ‘de-sressing’, whiling away his time and plotting his next move.
Meanwhile, the JNU student protests continue. Students continue to sing, laugh and rejoice in their struggle.
[ Video by Tanushree Basin, taken from her Youtube Channel ]