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Monday, Aug 26, 2019

SPPU bars anti-national activities: Students call it attack on democracy 

The new rule book for SPPU hostel inmates has barred indulgence in any political activities and has prohibited the students from getting into any ‘anti-government’ or ‘anti-national’ activities on the hostel premises

pune Updated: Jul 31, 2019 16:20 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Pune
The entrance of the girl’s hostel at the University campus.
The entrance of the girl’s hostel at the University campus.(Rahul Raut/HT PHOTO)
         

The new set of regulations for hostel students issued last week by the Savitribai Phule Pune University (SPPU) has drawn criticism from student outfits and youth wings of the Congress, the Nationalist Congress Party, the Swabhimani Paksha, National Student Union of India (NSUI) and many other groups.

The new rule book for SPPU hostel inmates has barred indulgence in any political activities and has prohibited the students from getting into any ‘anti-government’ or ‘anti-national’ activities on the hostel premises. Students are outraged with this diktat to stifle their right to express political views, especially when the state government has finally allowed student elections on campuses after 29 years.

Ruksana Patil Shaikh, a student and National Student Union of India (NSUI) member, said, “If we are talking against the administration, does it mean that we are ‘anti-nationals’ for the government? It is a straight attack on the students’ democracy. If students are not able to express and speak out about their issues then how will we become responsible citizens? This rulebook clearly says that the SPPU administration wants mechanised working people and not responsible citizens.”

In the code of conduct laid down by the new rulebook, it is stated “students shall not indulge in any ‘anti-national’, ‘anti-social’, communal or undesirable activity or political activity which is determined in the law and order, or against the government. Students shall not carry on any propaganda or publicity of any nature whatsoever, in respect of anything or any matter including political or communal matters.”

Kuldeep Ambekar, president of Students Helping Hand organisation, said, “The new rules do not give the right to freedom to the student. The government is two-faced as on one hand they look to bring back campus elections, but on the other hand, they have barred us from indulging in political activities. If these rules are not taken back, then we will hold a protest against it.”

Prafulla Pawar, SPPU registrar, said, “There should be a code of conduct for students who live in the SPPU hostel and accordingly these set of rules are given. According to it, students cannot indulge in any political activities, on the hostel premises only. If they want to express their political views or hold a protest, they can do it outside.”

First Published: Jul 31, 2019 16:19 IST

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