Democratic Teachers Front (DTF) released a statement showing solidarity with Prof Sudipta Bhattacharyya who has been reportedly suspended for speaking out against the Vice Chancellor of University of Delhi (DU).
On Sunday, 10th January 2021, Democratic Teachers Front (DTF) released a statement showing solidarity against Prof. Sudipta Bhattacharyya’s suspension. Reportedly, Prof Bhattacharya has been suspended for speaking out against the Vice Chancellor of University of Delhi (DU). DTF stated that Prof. Bhattacharya, as an office bearer of the faculty association, had been actively questioning the irregularities of the VC.
“What is happening in Vishva Bharati is not happening in isolation. This is the vision of education in NEP 2020, which seeks corporatization of the education sector – units to be governed by the Board of Governors and with no representation of Students-teacher- karamcharis on decision making bodies.”Abha Dev Habib, Secretary DTF
Statement by DTF threw light on how the Vishva Bharati seemed to be the latest example of how universities were increasingly being run in an authoritarian manner in the country. As per the reports, the Executive Council found Mr. Bhattcharya guilty of “misconduct by mass circulating a complaint, and making derogatory/defamatory/ baseless remarks against a fellow employee, as well as providing the copies of the same to the high dignitaries via email”.
“We stand with Sudipta and teachers of Vishva Bharati. How can CCS rules be applied to Universities? Universities are places which teach students to question. New knowledge comes by questioning what exists today. The purpose of universities is to create aware thinking citizens. Can teachers or students be penalized for speaking up? Dissent cannot be criminalised.”Abha Dev Habib, Secretary DTF
DTF further stated that DU had implemented Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) rules which banned teaching and non-teaching staff from doing a press release or making statements on social media regarding matters related to the University. It added that it was a BoG model of National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 and had to be resisted.
The statement as undersigned by Ms. Nandita Narain, president DTF, and Ms. Abha Dev Habib, Secretary DTF, appealed that the universities had to be saved as critical spaces of academic inquiry. It added that any curbing of those basic rights and freedoms amounted to dismantle the foundational principles of a university.
Link to the petition condemning the Suspension of Prof. Sudipta Bhattacharya: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfTvYUTN7u3NABatsBUCP_QrFmHH-uaYqwGfryAPLEdadJJHQ/viewform
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