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Tuesday, Oct 15, 2019

Bengal guv visits Jadavpur VC in hospital after Babul Supriyo heckled at varsity

Dhankhar arrived at around 10 am and spent about 25 minutes at the hospital. He spoke with the VC alone for about 10 minutes.

india Updated: Sep 21, 2019 19:00 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Kolkata
Bengal governor Jagdeep Dhankhar is the ex-officio chancellor of Jadavpur University.
Bengal governor Jagdeep Dhankhar is the ex-officio chancellor of Jadavpur University.(HT PHOTO.)

Bengal governor Jagdeep Dhankhar called on Jadavpur University vice-chancellor Suranjan Das and pro-vice-chancellor Pradip Ghosh on Saturday at a Kolkata hospital where they were admitted since the tumultuous hours of student agitation around Union minister Babul Supriyo on Thursday evening.

The governor is the ex-officio chancellor of the university.

“The chancellor indicated that as guardian he will engage in all-out efforts to interact with the students, faculty and the management so that the University is put in the growth trajectory… The chancellor greatly appreciated the stand of the VC that he will organize the interaction with faculty members in the near future,” a statement released from Raj Bhavan said.

“The governor told us that he is available in any capacity to help the university,” said JU registrar Snehamanju Basu.

Dhankhar arrived at around 10 am and spent about 25 minutes at the hospital. He spoke with the VC alone for about 10 minutes.

“Both (the VC and pro-VC) were admitted with high blood pressure and anxiety-related problems. But they are far better now. The governor asked me how they were keeping and told me not to release them till they were fully fit,” said R K Dutta Ray, superintending physician, internal medicine of the hospital.

According to hospital employees, Dhankhar also asked for a writing pad during the meeting.

In the afternoon, education minister and Trinamool secretary general Partha Chatterjee, who got involved in a statement war with the governor over the JU incident, went to the hospital to meet the VC and pro-VC. “I came to visit them as a token of the chief minister’s direction to stand beside the authorities, teachers and the students,” said Chatterjee.

Since Thursday, the stance of the VC, who preferred to resign to calling the police in the campus to free Union minister Babul Supriyo, has virtually polarized the city of Kolkata. While Bharatiya Janata Party leaders criticized him, the ruling party, a section of the teachers and students stood in his support.

“The university believes that the campus cannot be administered with the help of the police which provokes adverse implications. It was due to the pursuance of University’s teachers and employees, not the intervention of the police, that led to the withdrawal of the blockade in front of His Excellency’s car on the spot,” JU registrar Snehamanju Basu said in a statement on Friday evening.

On Saturday, the senior-most minister in Mamata Banerjee’s cabinet, Subrata Mukherjee said it is a strange situation that even the chief minister cannot order the police into the campus if the VC does not agree.

“What will the police do if the VC says he would die but not allow the police in. The governor, as the chancellor, should have prevailed upon the VC to call the police and in that case, that onus would have come on the administration (to defuse the crisis) If something again happens in future, the same predicament will emerge,” said Mukherjee. He also described the incident as a pre-decided screenplay.

Subrata Mukherjee added that Babul Supriyo should have informed the VC’s office that he would be visiting the campus.

Both the VC and the Pro-VC were discharged from the hospital on Saturday evening.

First Published: Sep 21, 2019 19:00 IST

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