Published: 28th February 2020
Students call Banaras Hindu University VC anti-Hindi for conducting staff interview in English
BHU spokesperson Rajesh Singh denied the allegation saying that the interview was conducted as per the prescribed norms and no one misbehaved with the candidates neither was there any favouritism
Students of the Banaras Hindu University (BHU) are demanding action against the Vice-Chancellor Dr Rakesh Bhatnagar, accusing him of being 'anti-Hindi'. Allegedly English was made the compulsory mode of communication at a recent interview for the post of an assistant professor. Students had also reportedly heckled the Union HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal on Thursday when he visited the campus to lay the foundation of students' activity centre, boys' hostel and faculty residential block at IIT-BHU and to attend other functions, demanding Bhatnagar's removal.
"We strongly oppose the discrimination against Hindi-speaking candidates in the interviews for the teaching posts," said a fellow of BHU, Karan Kumar Singh, who had also faced an interview for the post of assistant professor at the Department of Ancient Indian History and Culture and Archaeology in the first week of January. He alleged that he was asked to answer only in English during the interview.
The course attracts a huge number of students who have studied in Hindi medium and they are taught in Hindi here as well. "A lot of these candidates who were applying for the job were also educated in Hindi-medium. They missed out on the opportunity just because they could not speak a language that has nothing to do with the subject," said Aakansha, a member of the Bhagat Singh Chhatra Morcha (BCM) at the university.
Earlier, a group of students had also staged a demonstration on January 4 and submitted a memorandum to the office of registrar alleging that the Hindi-speaking candidates were discouraged to take part in the interview.
However, BHU spokesperson Rajesh Singh denied the allegation saying that the interview was conducted as per the prescribed norms and no one misbehaved with the candidates neither was there any favouritism.
Hoardings have also appeared in different localities accusing the Vice-Chancellor on these issues. The students claimed that the vice-chancellor discriminated against Hindi-speaking students. Similar hoardings had also appeared before the recent visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi — 'Rajbhasha Hindi ki upeksha va apman kyon' (Why is Hindi being ignored and insulted) and 'Rajbhasha Hindi ko Rashtrabhasha ghosit kiya jaye' (Make Hindi national language). The students are also demanding a judicial probe into the recruitment process of assistant professors.
BHU has been the eye of the recent storm about the appointment of a Muslim man in a Sanskrit department and the varsity has also promoted Sanskrit and Indian ideologies on a regular basis.