Home » Furore in Bengal as former TMC student leader insults, harasses Aliah University VC

Furore in Bengal as former TMC student leader insults, harasses Aliah University VC

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A video, showing the vice-chancellor of Kolkata’s Aliah University being threatened and abused with invectives by an expelled student leader, rocked Bengal since Saturday with intellectuals and citizens condemning the incident and targeting the Trinamool Congress (TMC).

Though the incident took place on Friday, the accused, Giyasuddin Mondal, was arrested on Sunday afternoon following strong protests on the streets and social media.

The viral video, the veracity of which was confirmed by the police, showed the VC, Prof. Mahammad Ali, seated quietly in his office with Mondal and his associates insulting him in filthy language and threatening to murder him.

Apparently shot by one of the associates of Mondal, the 1.48 minute video clip went viral on Saturday, almost 12 hours later.

Mondal and his associates, who faced the camera several times, raised objection to the selection of students for a doctoral course. Mondal could be heard saying that he was not afraid of the police as he had been arrested earlier under non-bailable sections of the Indian Penal Code.

The former TMC student leader, who was earlier the president of the TMC-controlled students’ union, was expelled by the former VC of the university. He spent 10 days in judicial custody three years ago following police complaints.

Run by the department of minority affairs and Madrasah education, Aliah University was set up in 2008.

Mondal was arrested by officers of the Techno City police station on Sunday afternoon from the New Town area where he lives.

“Mondal and a handful of youths are known troublemakers. He was expelled by my predecessor and arrested on criminal charges. I fell sick when they were abusing me,” the VC told the media.

Even as the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) staged an agitation in some districts and governor Jagdeep Dhankhar condemned the incident, saying it was the fallout of politicisation of the education system, the TMC distanced itself from Mondal.

“Mondal was expelled from the TMC students’ union three years ago following specific complaints. He had no business on campus. The fact that the episode was recorded and circulated on social media proves that this was a conspiracy to malign the TMC. Our party does not support hooliganism on campus. Police will take action,” said TMC state general secretary Kunal Ghosh.

The incident created a stir at Kolkata’s Jadavpur University where Mahammad Ali was a professor of chemistry before being selected for this new assignment.

“I used to be a professor myself. This is unpardonable. The VC sat quietly throughout the incident. Had I been in his place, I would have slapped the hooligan,” said Bengal BJP state president Sukanta Majumdar.

TMC Lok Sabha member Saugata Roy, who was a professor for decades at a well-known college in Kolkata, said, “The insult of a teacher cannot be tolerated.”

Mondal’s arrest did not end the protests. Students of Aliah University started an agitation demanding arrest of some outsiders who allegedly backed Mondal. The students claimed that they have accessed audio recording of some conversations between Mondal and his mentors.

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