PIL in Calcutta High Court over Jadavpur University crackdown

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JU case: PIL in Calcutta High Court
Kolkata, Sep 19: The Calcutta High Court Friday directed the West Bengal government and the Jadavpur University to file affidavits stating steps being taken to restore normalcy in the varsity where students have boycotted classes and were staging protests following a police crackdown. [Read: Jadavpur University: Students protest outside VC's office demanding resignation]

The Public Interest Litigation (PIL) has been filed by Bimal Shankar Nanda, a research scholar in the university, before a bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice Ashim Kumar Banerjee, seeking return of normalcy in the varsity.

Students have been protesting and condemning the police crackdown. They have also been demanding the removal of vice chancellor Abhijit Chakrabarty.

"It (Jadavpur University) is one of the leading institutes in India. Because of the continuing impasse not only is its image getting tarnished, but all those associated with it are suffering. So I have filed the PIL," Nanda told IANS.

"The bench directed the state government to file an affidavit stating the steps that are being taken to restore normalcy. The case will come up for hearing Wednesday," said lawyer Bikash Ranjan Bhattacharya, appearing for a section of students.

Counsel for Jadavpur University Billodal Bhattacharya said the university has been asked to submit an affidavit by Wednesday stating the circumstances that led to the impasse and steps taken to check the unrest and facilitate return of normalcy.

Many students were hospitalised after police allegedly beat them Sep 17 as they were protesting outside Chakrabarty's office, seeking a fresh inquiry into the sexual harassment of a student in the campus last month.

The police crackdown has been widely condemned, with students and political parties demanding Chakrabarty's removal as the vice chancellor.

Both Police Commissioner Surajit Kar Purakayastha and Education Minister Partha Chatterjee have refuted claims that the students were baton charged or assaulted.

IANS

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