AISA and NSUI protest against DU professor Marx Jihad’s remarks

On Friday, the leftist AISA and the student wing of Congress, NSUI, staged a protest outside Kirori Mall College.

The left-wing AISA and the student wing of the Congress, NSUI, staged a protest outside Kirori Mall College here on Friday against a college professor who accused the Kerala board of conspiring behind the admission of a large number of students. At Delhi University (DU). Earlier this week, Professor Rakesh Kumar Pandey, a faculty member at the university and a member of the RSS-affiliated National Democratic Teachers Front (NDTF), accused the Kerala board of conspiring to admit large numbers of students to DU College. Marx even used the term ‘jihad’.

Pandey was not present at the college during the protest. “I have raised an issue and those I had doubts about are now raising their voices. I have not said anything that I should withdraw. I am ready to have a dialogue and I have my reasoning to support my point. Maybe, I will not apologize, “he said.

The NDTF, however, distanced itself from Pandey’s comments. “Delhi University is a central university, open to students of all states and all secondary boards without any discrimination. Students from all states have equal rights to study at the best institutions of DU’s central university status based on merit criteria.

“The NDTF has nothing to do with the views expressed by any person on any state secondary board. The NDTF unequivocally distances itself from any objectionable statements,” the teachers’ union said on Friday. The DU on Thursday rejected allegations of bias against state boards, saying it “maintains equity for all meritorious candidates, not only from Indian states but also from abroad”. The All India Students Association (AISA) has demanded immediate suspension of Pandey and stern action against the professor.

“Pandey recently made horrific Islamophobic and racist remarks against Muslim students in Kerala,” it said in a statement. AISA members, along with other DU students, first gathered at the Arts Faculty where the effigy of Pandey was burnt, followed by a procession. They chanted slogans against caste and demanded the dismissal of Pandey from all posts at Kirori Mall College.

The National Students Union of India (NSUI) has also protested against the professor’s remarks about Kerala students. NSUI members met with the principal of Kirori Mall College and presented a memorandum. It has been demanded that strict action be taken against the professor immediately. The students also burned a picture of Pand and demanded an apology from him for his comments.

NSUI state president Kunal Sehrawat said, “We have today issued a stern warning to the DU administration through protests, demanding immediate dismissal of the professor and an apology.” NSUI national secretary and Delhi in-charge Nitish Gaur said Kerala students have worked hard to get 100 per cent in board exams. He said, “That professor should be fired immediately so that no professor can do such thing in future.”

The Students Federation of India (SFI) has staged a protest in front of the Faculty of Arts, North Campus, alleging that state boards discriminate against students in the admission process. Protesters also denounced the “extremely insulting and sectarian statement by Pandey” who accused the “Kerala students” of inciting regionalism by calling ‘Marx Jihad’ a good score.

Meanwhile, the RSS-affiliated Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) on Friday burnt the effigy of the DU administration. Its main demands are to fix the extended cut-off, normalize the results of the state board in the admission process, stop the admission process immediately and conduct initial screening of students for admission.

ABVP state secretary Siddharth Yadav said, “The future of students is threatened by the short-sightedness of the university. All the students in the country are being deprived of justice due to inflated results of some state boards. We are not. Against any board or state, we demand that all states Students will have equal access to admission.


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