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SUST students continue protests demanding VC’s resignation

  • Staff Correspondent
  • 18 January, 2022 12:00 AM
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SUST students continue protests demanding VC’s resignation

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The students of Shahjalal University of Science and Technology (SUST) continued their protest movement for second day on Monday to press home their three-point demands.

Earlier on Sunday night, they started their movement demanding resignation of Vice-chancellor Farid Uddin Ahmed following police attack on students.

Students blamed the VC for ordering police to carry out the attack on students on Sunday evening for their protest demanding resignation of the provost of Begum Sirajunnesa Chowdhury Hall for misbehaving a resident.

In addition to the vice chancellor’s resignation, they demanded stepping down of the proctorial body and the students’ advisory director.

 Hundreds of students gathered on the university campus  and brought out a procession and chanted slogans to put forth their three-point demand, although all classes and examinations at the university were suspended until further notice on Sunday night following an emergency syndicate meeting.     The SUST authorities also asked residential students of five halls to vacate their halls by 12:00pm on Monday. The emergency syndicate meeting was called after a clash between police and students in front of the IICT building on the campus.

The protesting students threatened to declare the VC persona non-grata on the campus and said they will not leave the residential halls if their demands are not met.

The protesters said they would send a memorandum to the president, who is also the chancellor of all universities in the country.

Meanwhile, some students were seen leaving their dormitories as per the authorities’ instruction while many others refused to leave and joined the protest rally.

It was the VC who ordered the police to open fire and charge batons at the students, the protesters alleged.

They are demanding accountability of all concerned including the vice-chancellor in the incident of police action on agitating students.

Earlier, students staged a sit-in protest at the university gate till Sunday midnight protesting the university authority’s instruction to leave halls and the closure of their classes.

Meanwhile, the university authorities formed an eight-member probe committee over the incident of attack. The committee was formed during an emergency syndicate meeting on Sunday night.

Vice-chancellor (VC) Farid Uddin Ahmed said, “The university was quiet. We have to find out why the university suddenly become restless. Teachers were also injured in Sunday’s attack. An inquiry committee has been formed to look into the matter. The committee has been asked to submit an investigation report soon.”

Students have been protesting since Thursday, calling for the provost of Begum Sirajunnesa Chowdhury Hall to resign after the provost allegedly misbehaved with a resident.

On Sunday noon, the students confined the vice-chancellor at the IICT building. To free the VC, police charged batons, fired sound grenades and rubber bullets to disperse the students at 5:30 pm. Students reacted by throwing brick chips at them.

At least 30 students were critically injured. At least 10 policemen and two teachers were also injured.

Azbahar Ali Sheikh, Deputy Commissioner (north) of Sylhet Metropolitan Police said police used a baton charge when the protesters grew agitated.