In a shocking move, the Central University of Gujarat has issued showcause notices to nine of its professors for campaigning for anti-BJP candidates, including Congress MLA Alpesh Thakore, Independent Jignesh Mevani and Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti leader Hardik Patel during the Gujarat assembly elections in 2017. The showcause notices were sent based on a complaint written in English on a letterhead of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidya Parishad (ABVP), which is student wing of RSS, ending with the sentence – “Students of ABVP of CUG”. However, the ABVP representative of CUG and state-level office employee denied having sent any such complaint, according to a report by The Indian Express.
The complaint made on November 17, 2017 has pictures of the professors taken at an event attended by Rahul Gandhi, last year. The photographs were attested with the complaint addressed to HRD minister Prakash Javadekar. Two other photographs have also been attached where one teacher is shown sitting with Gandhi and another professor is shown with teachers’ union representative from Delhi with the caption “all CUG faculty canvassing inside university”. Surprisingly, the photographs are dated November 17 while the Congress event, Navsarjan Gyaan Adhikar Sabha, was held on November 24, 2017.
The complaint accused the teachers of converting the state varsity into another JNU, while some of the faculty members think that attending an event does not amount to campaigning for the party. The notices were served to one professor, one associate professor and seven assistant professors, describing their participation in the event as a violation of the Central Civil Services (Conduct) Rules. Rule 5 of the Central Civil Services (CCS) Conduct Rule forbidding all government employees from joining political parties and campaigning for them.
The complaint also targeted ex-VC K R Kale who took charge of JNU in 2009 and left in 2014. According to the report, the complaint expressed disquiet on Kale and accused him of putting Marxists mindset in 30 to 40 teachers from JNU destructing development of the students and the country. The complaint further alleged that 10 to 15 such teachers were corrupting students, employees of the University and was a hindrance in the varsity’s smooth development. Meanwhile, Chancellor of CUG and ABVP state secretary both denied the existence of such complaint.