Political Activities in Utkal University Must Be Banned

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

The Utkal University of Orissa is in a shambles because of the sickening political game played by the shortsighted but shrewd scoundrels posing as leaders either of the ruling BJD or of the opposition party, the Congress. The Police officials know and the people know; the executive knows and the students know. Vani Vihar, the seat of the University, is burning.

A final year M.A. student in Sociology Parikshit Behera is hospitalized allegedly as Biju Chhatra Janata (student wing of BJD) leaders attempted to murder him. Students belonging to Chhatra Congress (student wing of Congress) are in hunger strike demanding criminal prosecution against the culprits.

Police has arrested a BJD aspirant of the post of Secretary of the Vani Vihar Students Union, Kalpataru Ojha after interrogating a group of leaders of the ruling party’s student wing.

Were the police not sure of the ruling wing’s attempt to murder a student in order to intimidate others in their attempt to hijack the election; it would never have booked Kalpataru.

The Chhatra Congress is no less responsible for the ongoing unrest in Vani Vihar.

Police action will not establish peace. Prosecution against any student will not restore study atmosphere.

An academician of world repute, who is not only an expert in social-benefit-cost-analysis but also has enriched Indian Institute of Management, Lucknow and Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, Prof. Binayak Rath is the Vice Chancellor, by using whose expertise the University could have immensely benefited. But the way political parties have been instigating students on party lines makes the climate so vitiated and anti-academic that his excellence and expertise goes unused.

We are shocked to see that the Chancellor being the Governor of the State is sitting silent.

The ethics behind making the Governor the Chancellor of the University is that he being above politics will ensure academic environment in the University is never infested with politics. But the Governor in the instant case has failed to act as the Chancellor.

Let him act and ban activities that spread the tentacles of political octopuses around the neck of the University.

He needs to know that student union elections are meant for equipping the students with the experience of democratic management of their affairs, not for equipping “political students” with opportunity to pollute study environment.

Students union in the University must be the union of students. It cannot be allowed to become the union of “political tentacles” enrolled as students.

Strong action against every student who acts as a political tentacle including rustication is necessary to save the study environment of the University.

The Governor is required to act as the chancellor and let him wake up and act.

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