Published: 19th October 2019
Take permission to visit PSR, JNU tells students: JNUSU to hold all-night vigil today
The recent lockdown of the social spaces like PSR is a larger ploy of the RSS-ABVP-BJP of turning universities into an isolated space where there is no place for critical learning, said the students
The Parthasarathy Rocks or PSR, inside the JNU campus, has been cordoned off by a wall erected by the Jawaharlal Nehru University administration and the students are not happy about it. The JNUSU has called for an all-night vigil to "reclaim JNU" that will start at 9 pm from Sabarmati Dhaba on October 19 "to resist the attack on rights of JNU students' rights and aspirations".
The students said that in the past few days the JNU administration led by the Dean of Students, Umesh Kadam, "is putting no stops in its attempts to make the campus a restricted and securitised zone with attacks on the democratic spaces cherished by the students". But the administration has an explanation for its action. "The wall was erected because some strangers had broken the gate down and got in. It is only to ensure safety. Any student who wants to go there can get permission first," said an official.
"The area has always been accessible to all JNU students at all times. No untoward incident or any such occurrence has happened which could even remotely explain the rationale of such a move. Moreover, unlike its other draconian moves, the admin has not even cared to bring a circular to inform, let alone explain away such a step," said Former JNUSU President N Sai Balaji.
The students also said that the security is not up to the mark. "Recently, the security contract of JNU has been changed and given over to a different company. Since then, the number of security guards on campus has reduced. PSR is one of the places which was left unguarded and now has been put off-limits for students," Balaji said. "This move of the administration is beyond rhyme and reason, and hence is unacceptable to the student community. Patriarchal and militaristic notions of discipline based on restrictions, intimidation and gender discrimination can never ever be allowed to take root in a campus-like JNU which embodies the best of this country's democratic and progressive traditions. This attempt to close down spaces like PSR and turn the clock back are going to be rejected summarily by the JNU community and advise the administration to desist from such moves," he added.