Two students of Jawaharlal Nehru University were evicted from their hostel rooms on Monday, while four more are due to be evicted in the coming week. In the meantime, the administration has said it is in the process of constituting proctorial enquiries against all protesting students who it claims “have been creating a ruckus in the university”.
The six students were academically suspended from the university on December 16 after vice-chancellor Jagadesh Kumar alleged that a group of students had abused and tried to attack him on the campus on December 14. “There is prima facie evidence that you… were found to have surrounded the Vice-Chancellor and other officials of the University. You abused, heckled and scuffled with them in the presence of the JNU security guards and officers and Delhi Police personnel. The official vehicle of the Vice-Chancellor was hit with a sharp object, breaking the front and rear glasses. Thereafter, you entered the administrative building using abusive language, and banged the doors of the officials. You broke open the door of the Vice-Chancellor’s office and vandalised and ransacked it,” the letters addressed to them by the Chief Proctor on December 16 read.
Students have denied an attack of that nature. One of them, a Ph.D. scholar, even denied being in the vicinity when the incident took place. The proctorial enquiry against the students has not been completed. The letter from the proctor said they will be kept under academic suspension, be evicted from the hostel and have the entire campus declared as out of bounds “pending outcome of Proctorial enquiry into the incident”.
The next day, they received notices stating that they would have to evacuate their hostel rooms on Monday. The eviction order also came with the warning that “Any one giving shelter to (the students) in any hostel/residence on campus shall invite disciplinary action”. However, students said they will continue staying on campus, in friends’ rooms, despite the order.
In the meantime, student activists claimed the administration has been sending out to notices of proctorial enquiries “en masse”. Registrar Dr Pramod Kumar said the notices would be sent out to “all students who are creating a ruckus in the university”. “We don’t know yet how many students will receive these notices but it will be done on the basis of our security reports. It will go out to all those students who have been blocking the way of teachers, not allowing exams to take place and disrupting university life over the last month,” he said.