Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar at Jadavpur University campus. (Photo @jdhankhar1)
Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar at Jadavpur University campus. (Photo @jdhankhar1)

Bengal Governor forced to leave Jadavpur University after students block way

The students declared days ago that they would not accept degrees from Dhankhar because he supported Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA).
Hindustan Times, Kolkata | By HT Correspondent
UPDATED ON AUG 11, 2020 12:25 AM IST

Amid agitation by a section of students, Bengal governor Jagdeep Dhankhar was forced to leave Jadavpur University on Tuesday where he had gone to attend the annual convocation.

The students declared days ago that they would not accept degrees from Dhankhar because he supported Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA).

The Governor remained stuck inside his car for one and a half hours and wrote a series of tweets questioning the intention of the JU authorities and law and order situation in the state. The Bengal Governor is the chancellor of all state-run universities.

 Watch | ‘Playing with fire’: WB Guv after students block convoy outside Jadavpur University

The agitation was carried out by students belonging to Left and far-Left unions and by employees owing allegiance to the Trinamool Congress.

Tuesday’s incident was preceded by three days of tussle between JU and Dhankhar over holding the convocation. On Monday evening, JU authorities decided to hold the ceremony the way they wanted and made it somewhat optional for the Governor to attend. The authorities also decided to defer the special convocation where Dhankhar was to confer D.Litt and D.Sc on some eminent people.

Hours before that, students and employees joined hands and gheraoed the governor’s car when he arrived around 1.55 pm on Monday to attend the scheduled meeting of the JU court, the institution’s highest decision making body.

Armed with black flags and placards, the students on Monday shouted slogans against Dhankhar, calling him an “agent of the BJP” and questioning his neutrality. “Not our chancellor,” “Go back Dhankhar,” they shouted, forcing the governor to stay in his car for 50 minutes.

The same scene was repeated on Tuesday morning. The convocation, which was to begin at 10.30 am, got delayed.

“@MamataOfficial. Am surprised that in spite of my directive to VC to go by rule book and abide by my direction as regards Convocation, the same has been started. In utter helplessness as of now I am leaving the Jadavpur University campus. Those concerned must soul search,” Dhankhar tweeted before leaving the campus around noon on Tuesday.

Dhankhar complained that the rule of law in the state is “severely compromised” and that him not being allowed to attend the convocation was politically motivated.

“Neither the VC nor anyone else from the University has contacted me though I have from my side contacted them. Painfully the VC and others are giving bites to the Media rather than have dialogue with those engaged in obstruction,” Dhankhar said in another tweet, holding vice chancellor Suranjan Das, who presided over the convocation, responsible for the chaos.

The Governor made his displeasure known and accused the Vice Chancellor of being a “silent spectator” to the goings on.

“A painful scenario that the Jadavpur University Vice Chancellor is oblivious deliberately of his obligations and looking for alibis. He is presiding total collapse of rule of law. Ruinous state of affairs,” he tweeted.

The vice chancellor was busy at the convocation and was not available for comments till 2.30 pm

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