Published: 01st January 2020
AMU VC writes open letter regretting calling the cops, but it sounds like pontification. Here's why
He also went on to say that 'certain outcomes of decisions at times are affected by many unforeseen circumstances and criticism' is fair
According to some of the fact-finding reports, the police violence unleashed at Aligarh Muslim University last month was equal to the atrocities in Jamia, if not worse. Students suffered life-changing injuries that night, some losing their eyesight, while others lost fingers and toes. But the difference between Jamia and AMU was that the Jamia administration immediately came out to say that they had never granted permission to the police to enter the campus.
The AMU Vice Chancellor, on the other hand, had called the police in themselves.
Today, the VC, Tariq Mansoor wrote an open letter inviting students back to campus and said that he regrets what happened on December 15. "The decision taken on the night of December 15 was in good faith and with a clear conscience. Primarily it was aimed to disperse the charged up students who had gotten carried away with false rumours of the death of two students in Jamia. When we saw the situation going out of hand, it was imperative that we act appropriately," he wrote in his letter.
He also went on to say that 'certain outcomes of decisions at times are affected by many unforeseen circumstances and criticism' is fair, "We derive wisdom from such decisions with humility and for improved responses in the future." He also said that the decision to vacate the hostels was taken after much deliberation due to the situation in the country and that he deeply regrets the fact that 'some' students were inconvenienced.
Who hijacked whose concerns?
He also hoped that the situation would resolve soon, "The administration will do all that is possible within its powers and legal boundaries to ensure justice is delivered to the innocent. Do not rush to judgment or believe in every narrative that is spread by people who are unaware of the exact circumstances under which administration was operating," the VC said. He also said that he has full faith in the maturity 'of his students', "I expect that your genuine concerns are not hijacked by others with vested interests. Please help the administration in identifying trouble makers who are bent on creating a rift between students and administration," he said.
The VC also said in his letter that with 'love and respect' he seeks the students' support to complete the year smoothly. "Creating an atmosphere of anarchy will hurt our credibility as peaceful citizens and validate the lies that are being spread about our beloved university. Every day is a new challenge and we must stay focused amidst these challenges," he added. Mansoor said he respects the students for carrying out protests peacefully to being the nation's attention to laws which they feel are objectionable. He also said that he and the administration have no intention to subvert student rights. "All decisions are taken by me in the last two-and-a-half years as VC are in the interest of the students and the institution. However, if you have any concerns, please feel free to voice them to me so they can be addressed," he wrote.
Was it really a knee jerk reaction?
Yes, he ends the letter by saying that 'our ego, knee jerk responses to events, preference to myopic short term benefits should not cloud our thinking of the long term objectives that the university is meant to serve', "Let us remind ourselves that many of our students come from humble background and the education received at this prestigious university has the power to transform their future. We must ensure AMU continues to serve the passion and dreams of our present students and future generations," he added.
This is mere eyewash, or is there more?
Some of the students were unhappy with the letter, one of them took to FB to say that it is a futile attempt at eyewash, "It is deficient in any substantial action plan, lacks any resolves commitment for the well-being of the students in time to come. It makes ill-chosen use of the formal and trivial words like 'regret' for the grave and unparalleled excesses and ruthless brutalities denoted on our students on the campus. Most of the contents of this letter are fake and uses a formal replica of words like look forward, respects the spirit of students, I am deeply pained. The letter is not only poorly drafted, decayed and pedestrian but most of its content is copy-pasted and cloned."
Another user said the VC was shedding 'crocodile tears'
One of the users also dissected the entire letter, asking questions such as what the administration will do to help the students who have been suspended or slapped with legal cases.