‘BHU has nurtured communal harmony for over 100 years’Updated: Nov 22, 2019 00:54 IST
Banaras Hindu University (BHU) has enjoyed a glorious past of over 100 years of communal harmony, its former public relations officer said.
There had never ever been any communal tension on the campus, said former public relation officers Dr Vishwanath Pandey, adding that he was pained by the protest by a group of students against the appointment of a Muslim as an assistant professor in the department of Sahitya at faculty of Sanskrit Vidya Dhram Vijnan (SVDV).
Pandey also said, “BHU is governed by the norms of the Indian Constitution ever since it was taken over by the central government. It is run by the BHU Act 1916 which was amended after Independence. Therefore, BHU is open for all the citizens of India. Research and studies in different subjects and languages have flourished together. BHU has nurtured communal harmony.”
“In its glorious history of over 100 years, communal tension never ever existed on the campus. Even if there was communal tension in any pocket of the city, BHU was considered most safe for all,” Pandey said, adding that the university remained peaceful even when the Babri Mosque was demolished on December 6, 1992.
He also said, “I particularly quote an incident through which BHU ensured communal harmony across the city and gave a message of peace. After Babri Mosque demolition, there was tension in the city. The whole city was under curfew. The then vice chancellor Prof CS Jha, along with 50 students and teachers, took out a peace march from the university to the Town Hall to spread the message of peace and communal harmony.”
When Prof Jha started from the university, only 50 students and teachers were accompanying him. As Jha, along with the students marched forward, thousands of citizens of Kashi joined the march which concluded at the Town Hall ground, Pandey recalled, adding that there were around 20,000 people taking part in the march that day.
He said that after the march, normality returned to the city and the district administration lifted curfew.
Those protesting against the appointment of the Muslim assistant professor should know that Hindu professors like Hukum Chand Naiyyar headed the department of Urdu, Dr Pandey said, adding that there had never been any opposition.
He said Darashikoh (son of Mughal Emperor Shahjahan) translated the Vedas and Upnishads from Sanskrit to Persian in Banaras. He lived in Aurangabad area of the city.
“On the basis of that and the work done by Max Muller, knowledge of our ancient scriptures spread across the world,” he said.
“We should not forget that legendary poet Mirza Ghalib, who stayed in Banaras for a long period, while on way to Kolkata from Delhi, described Banaras as Charag-E-Dair,” Pandey said.