Aligarh Muslim University Vice Chancellor PK Abdul Azis on Monday said that he was willing to conduct student union elections but only in January, contrary to early polls demanded by students backed by Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi.
Summoned by human resource development minister Kapil Sibal to Delhi, the VC told the minister that it would not be possible to hold the student union elections earlier than January when the university reopens after its winter break.
Sibal did not tell Azis to rush the elections — AMU, like all Indian universities is autonomous and the HRD minister has no direct powers over its functioning. However, sources confirmed that the HRD ministry would like AMU to hold the elections earlier than January if possible.
Gandhi had taken a team of students from AMU, Banaras Hindu University and Allahabad University — all UP-based central varsities — to meet Sibal on Saturday seeking the reconstitution of unions.
Students unions in AMU, BHU and Allahabad University have been suspended since 2006, 1997 and 2004.
“I told the minister that given our busy academic and administrative calendar over the next few months, it would not be possible to hold the student union elections before January 14, when AMU reopens after the winter vacation,” Azis said after his meeting with Sibal.
AMU has examinations starting this month and is also busy inaugurating campuses in Murshidabad, West Bengal on November 20 and in Mallapuram, Kerala in December.