Published: 20th March 2020
IIT Guwahati student handed "suspended academic expulsion" for supporting whistleblower prof
Two students went on an indefinite hunger strike against the institute's action against the professor
The Indian Institute of Technology, Guwahati administration has decided to keep a student supporter of the whistleblower professor on campus under "suspended academic expulsion". The student has been supporting the professor Dr Brijesh Kumar Rai ever since he accused the institute of corruption. He even went on a hunger strike in January along with another student after the institute took action against the professor.
Rai claims to have filed over 300 RTIs and unearthed various cases of corruption on campus which the institute has vehemently denied. A few weeks ago he was sent on 'compulsory retirement' when a committee decided so after holding an enquiry into his case. During the course of his trial, many students have come forward in support of him including holding a candle light March in solidarity. The student in question has been in support of the professor from the beginning, he along with another student went on a hunger strike for over a week and were carried away to the hospital by the administration.
Two days ago, he recieved a notice from the institute stating that he had been kept on "suspended academic expulsion" for one semester which will be applicable any time during his stay at the institute. This basically means that the student cannot violate the ordinance of the code of conduct and can also not indulge in any of the activities that he has been charged with. This includes sitting on an indefinite hunger strike which interfered with the operations on campus, refusing to call off the strike despite administration orders and misinterpreting information which led to the defamation of the institute.
The notice states that if he does violate any of these norms he would be immediately expelled without any deliberation and he would not be able to appeal against the decision. He will also not be allowed to represent the institute at any level and that he will be debarred from contesting any elections on campus including hostel, gymkhana, institute or department during his entire time of study.
"Your parents will be informed of your acts and the actions taken by the competent authority," the notice stated. The student who went on the hunger strike along with him has also been served a similar notice.
"Everybody who supported has been getting harassed. Not just students but also members of the faculty. They are scared to speak up because they are scared of the consequences. Now I'm no more an employee but the administration continues to harass all those who gave me their support. This is very unfair," Rai said.
We will update this copy with a response from the institute