Published: 15th March 2018
JNU attendance row: Teachers' Association to hold emergency meeting after Chairpersons get dismissed
The JNUTA has issued a statement regarding the recent issue regarding the removal of seven chairpersons from various departments for refusing to comply with the compulsory attendance rule on campus
After JNU removed seven chairpersons for not complying with the University's new compulsory attendance system, the Jawaharlal Nehru University Teacher's Association went on a march on Thursday.
For months now, the JNU students along with members of the faculty have been protesting against the administration for implementing the compulsory attendance rule on campus. In solidarity, many professors on campus have also not been taking attendance or submitting any attendance sheets to the office which is the reason that the administration has chosen to remove them from their positions in the department.
"The faculty colleagues who have been removed have been “punished” for performing their lawful duty of articulating their faculty colleagues’ views on a particular issue. Centre Chairpersons and School Deans are obviously no longer expected to be the representative voice of their centre or school but to implement the decisions taken by the “top administration”, with no questions asked," the JNUTA said in a statement.
The JNUTA has called for a general body emergency meeting on Friday to address the issue. The statement also pointed out that the sudden decision has also affected the entrance procedures going on in campus, "A confused and chaotic academic-administrative environment has been deliberately created, using a multi-pronged strategy of creating rifts inside centres and schools, attempting intimidation of teachers through various means and completely sabotaging the democratic elements of the decision-making processes of the university. It is unfortunate that the administration did not give a thought to the disruption that its move may entail given that entrance procedures are currently ongoing in the university."
Besides the "unreasonable" decision to ask these Chairpersons/Deans to step down from their positions, what has left both the faculty and students fuming is the people that the dethroned Chairpersons have been replaced with. "The Persian language head is now the head of the art and aesthetics department. The head of the Spanish department is now going to head the French department, the Arabic head will take over linguistics. How is this logical in any way? They decided to change the Chairpersons overnight and replace them with people who have no clue about how their respective departments work," said Simone Zoya, a member of the Student Council.
"We are the country's number one educational institute BECAUSE we go to classes. But to make the system so rigorous is to take away the students' freedom," she added. The JNUTA reportedly has put the departments on lockdown and will decide their next steps after the general body meeting on Friday.