After row, IIT-Roorkee says it didn't make yoga camp mandatory for students

  • Tapan Susheel, Hindustan Times, Roorkee
  • Updated: Jun 22, 2015 18:38 IST

A controversy erupted on Monday over whether the Indian Institute of Technology-Roorkee (IIT-R) made it mandatory for students to attend a yoga camp held on the occasion of International Yoga Day, though the management said it did not initiate any such move.

The management, however, clarified that the institute had issued a circular on conducting a yoga camp on Sunday as an 'initiative' from the dean's office. The authorities said the government had no role in it.

"We were not asked by HRD ministry or director’s office to conduct a yoga camp from June 18 to 24. It was an initiative from the dean's office,” professor DK Nauriyal, dean of students' welfare, told HT.

Later talking to PTI, he said, "However, my office did ask about 2,000-odd students staying at this time in the summer hostels to participate in the camp and make the unique initiative a success."

A full-blown controversy erupted after a student of the institute reportedly approached a section of media and alleged the institute instructed all students that they must attend a yoga camp.

IIT-R, which has been currently holding around 2500 students in its various hostels and departments, saw around 1000 students participating in the camp on June 21, when Prime Minister Narendra Modi's pet initiative -- the International Day of Yoga -- was observed across the world.

According to Nauriyal, students who were undergoing medication for some reason or observing Ramzan fasts or attending the UGC examinations for fellowship were exempted from participating in the camp.

“As summer vacations are on progress, just 1,386 students took part in the event. Had we forced all students (staying at the hostels), the turnout would have been better,” added Nauriyal.

“If any student had any issue then he should have registered a complaint with us. Moreover, the identify of the said student seems fictitious. So, we cannot comment more on him, he said.

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