Answer Sheet Scrutiny : Be Magnanimous, High Court Tells Delhi University

Delhi University has issued an advisory threatening action against students occupying the premises of departments, library and administrative blocks for protests and dharnas. This issue has been followed by Jawaharlal Nehru University.

A circular issued by the proctor’s office on February 16 states that “All students of Delhi University are advised not to occupy premises of departments, library and administrative blocks for protests and dharnas. These acts cause disruption in academic activities as well as day-to-day functioning of the respective offices.Causing disruption in any manner of the academic functioning of the university system amounts to an act of gross indiscipline as per ordinance XV Para 3 (i) of Delhi University Act, 1922.”

As per the Act, if any student is found violating the ordinance, he/she can be expelled, rusticated, asked to pay a fine or debarred from taking examinations.

At DU, students usually protest at the conference centre which houses the office of the Dean Students Welfare and admission department and the other area is Arts Faculty.

Student groups have opposed the circular stating that their right to protest is being curtailed.

“The university is a democratic space and everyone has a right to raise their voice. Students have the right to choose the place of protest so that their voices reach the university administration. We have submitted a memorandum to the university against it.” DUSU president Shakti Singh was quoted as saying.

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