Theweekendleader

JNU professor accuses protesters of blocking entry to lab

BY ROHAN AGARWAL   |  New Delhi

18-December-2019

 In yet another turn in the ongoing tussle between the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) administration and the agitating students, a professor on Wednesday accused the protesters of obstructing the entry way of his laboratory.

In a tweet posted on Wednesday morning, Gobardhan Das, a professor in JNU, accused the protesting students of blocking him from his lab for three days. The professor claims that he in October had co-discovered how tuberculosis treatment can be shortened by months.

"Blocked from entering my own lab for 3rd day. Now protesters put up a semi-permanent pandal also. Feeling so humiliated. In Oct my lab co-discovered how tuberculosis treatment can be shortened by months. Now banned from taking this fundamental discovery further. What's the point," Gobardhan Das tweeted on Wednesday morning.

However, Jawaharlal Nehru University Students Union (JNUSU) which is at the forefront of the agitation has rejected the professor's accusation and claimed that no one has been stopped from anything and the tweet is just another way to win sympathy for the administration.

"The call for academic boycott was a decision in the university's general body meeting, so it is a central decision, however, we make it clear that no one is being stopped from ignoring the boycott if they want," said the Vice-President of JNUSU, Saket Moon.

"The tweet is just another attempt by the right wing to gain sympathy in the eyes of the world, while they finish the educational institute each day with their undemocratic means," he added.

A hostel draft manual, introduced by the varsity, has become a bone of contention between the students and the varsity administration since October 28 when the administration didn't allow the JNUSU to attend the Inter-Hall Administration committee meeting that was to clear it.

The varsity administration argued that the JNUSU had not been notified due to the flouting of election rules. The draft hostel manual proposed to hike hostel charges from Rs 10 for double occupancy to Rs 300 and Rs 600 for single occupancy from the earlier Rs 20.

However, after student protests, the varsity administration announced a 50 per cent concession for the BPL category students, but it failed to pacify the students. The issue is being handled by the Ministry of Human Resource Development's high-powered committee which has given its recommendations to the varsity administration after several meetings with students and their representatives.IANS