Ram Lal Anand Professor G.N. Saibaba, who was suspended from the university, following his arrest by Maharashtra Police in 2014 for alleged maoist links, recently became a centre of attack after his visit to the college. The English professor, who is out on bail, went to the college to submit a letter where he allegedly became a target of anger and protest by members of ABVP (Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad).
While Professor Saibaba might be hopeful of a fresh start, his request for reinstatement has invited mixed reactions. A group of students, led by the members of the ABVP, strongly oppose the professor’s rejoining unless he is cleared of all the charges by the court. Talking to us, ABVP’s Delhi State Secretary, Bharat Khatana, said, “Saibaba has been suspended by DU and despite that he is coming to the college and addressing students. We believe that unless he gets a clean chit from the court and the Governing Body (GB) of the college, he must not be allowed to enter the college premises.”
Despite the relentless protests and public bashing, DUTA strongly condemned the attack on Dr. Saibaba. DUTA President Nandita Narain, while emphasising on the lack of security for the professor, told us, “Had it not been for the protection given by some faculty members and hundreds of college students, Dr. Saibaba could have suffered grievous injury. The DUTA expresses grave concern that the college administration as well as the local police did not prevent this violent intrusion, even though similar incidents had taken place over the last few days. The DUTA appeals to the VC for his immediate intervention to prevent this breakdown of governance in this university maintained college.”
Sharing the same sentiment, Narendra Pande, Associate Professor from the Department of History and a colleague of Saibaba told us, ” There are two important things which we must keep in mind. One is that, rule of law must prevail and second that,any suspended employ has a right to approach his workplace. We met the chairman of the Governing Body of the college, Mr. R.M. Kohli today and he will soon foresee the situation himself. The Staff Association, which is the teacher’s collective body of the college, passed a resolution with consensus to expedite the functioning of the one—member committee which has been formed by the college to look into the issue.”
The Staff Association plan to impress upon the Chairman of the Governing Body as well as the Principal of the college to take steps in order to stop the breakdown of normal functioning of the college and the creation of a conducive and safe environment for teaching. The Supreme Court had earlier this month granted the professor bail on the pretext that Maharashtra government had been “extremely unfair” to him.
To recall the important twists and turns of the case, read our timeline of Saibaba’s case here.
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