AU dissolves cultural panel, new one to be set up
Within days of first organising and then being forced to cancel a poetic symposium on the AU campus, the central university’s cultural committee has been dissolved on the orders of the vice-chancellor Prof Sangita Srivastava. The dissolution of the committee came through a notification issued by AU registrar Prof NK Shukla.
The symposium, which was scheduled to be held on August 13, had courted controversy when it emerged that some poets invited to it, had also been part of the anti-CAA protest at Shaheen Bagh in New Delhi.
An all-India Mushaira and Kavi Sammelan had been planned on the campus of AU on August 13 under the joint aegis of Uttar Pradesh Urdu Academy and Central Cultural Committee of AU and department of Urdu, AU. Prof Shabnam Hamid, head of the Urdu department and Prof Santosh Bhadauria, chairman of the Central Cultural Committee of AU were active in preparations for the event.
However, the Mushaira was cancelled at the last moment despite the fact that almost all the invited poets had arrived, besides many guests.
The cancellation had reportedly come after divisional commissioner Sanjay Goyal, who had earlier given his approval to attend the symposium as the chief guest and AU V-C, who was to preside over the function, backed out at the last moment.
Although the university authorities were tight-lipped about the reason for the event’s cancellation, citing “unavoidable circumstances, many officials had confirmed that it was because of the names of some Urdu poets who were among the invitees, as they had raised their voice against CAA at the Shaheen Bagh protests in New Delhi. When this issue went viral on social media, the two had backed out from attending the event and it was cancelled.
AU’s central cultural committee, which was constituted in December 2020, has been dissolved with immediate effect, confirmed university officials.
On the reason for the committee being dissolved within just eight months of it being set up, AU public relations officer (PRO), Jaya Kapoor, said, “The AU administration has decided that there is a need for a new cultural committee, and hence, the existing committee has been dissolved so that a new committee can take over.”