Oust Pandey stir on, MU closure peeves ANSAM

IMPHAL,11th Aug: Questioning if protecting Manipur University vice-chancellor Prof AP Pandey is more important than the career of thousands of students of the state, students of Oriental College staged a sit-in protest in front of their college gate here on Saturday.

The sit-in was organised by the students’ union of the college as part of the joint protest of AMSU, MSF, DESAM, KSA, SUK and AIMS demanding removal of Prof Pandey and return of normalcy in Manipur University.

Speaking to media persons on the sidelines, union general secretary Abung Khulem pointed out that MUSU, MUTA and MUSA have been demanding removal of the incompetent VC for more than two months now. Due to the impasse at the varsity, students of MU and all its affiliated colleges have been severely affected, he added. He condemned the government for being more interested in protecting the VC instead of removing him while declaring the protesting students as anti-nationals.

The general secretary then demanded immediate removal of the incompetent VC and cautioned the government against playing with the lives and future of the students. He also warned of launching intense agitations. Peeved with protracted cessation of all activities in MU due to the on-going agitation in pursuance of the demand for sacking Prof Pandey, All Naga Students’ Association Manipur (ANSAM) has warned of launching more intense stir if normalcy is not restored in Manipur University which has remained closed for more than 70 days.

According to our Senapati correspondent, ANSAM president Joseph Adani has cautioned both the state government and the agitators that tribal student bodies are ready to launch another intense form of agitation that may come up with some demands including alternative arrangement for the tribal students so that they can be free from this kind of agitation.

In a video conference held at the office of the Senapati District Students’ Association (SDSA) with executives of All Tribal Students’ Union, Manipur (ATSUM), ANSAM, Kuki Students’ Organisation, General Headquarters (KSO-GHQ) and SDSA, the ANSAM president sought public cooperation in the days to come so that dreams and demands of the tribal people are fulfilled.

During the video conference, ATSUM finance secretary Andria Sinruwng said that the closure of Manipur University over the demand for removal of the vice chancellor has passed more than 70 days. ATSUM had earlier asked both the Central and state governments as well as the agitators to resolve the MU impasse and given an ultimatum to open the varsity before August 6 considering the career of more than 28,000 students.

Consequently, ATSUM along with ANSAM and KSO-GHQ had imposed a 48-hour total shutdown in the entire hill districts of Manipur, urging the agitators and the government to end the impasse otherwise the careers of thousands of students will be ruined.

The student bodies also warned of intensifying their agitation to certain extent to make the agitators and the government feel that the tribals are also the stakeholders of Manipur University. The 48-hr long shutdown imposed by ATSUM and other student organisations in the hill districts continued to paralyse normal life in Tamenglong and Noney districts. Not a single vehicle was seen plying along the National Highway - 37 (Imphal-Jiribam Road and Tamenglong-Khongshang roads). Many vehicles are stranded in many areas of the two districts.

Meanwhile, peeved with delay in resolving the Manipur University crisis, NG College Students’ Union, Lamphelpat has declared that it will not take part in the Independence Day celebration on August 15. There is no academic atmosphere at MU and the students of affiliated colleges are suffering due to non-declaration of results of 2nd, 4th and 6th semester examinations but still the government failed to bring an amicable solution. The government values Prof AP Pandey more than the students’ career. Therefore, the union will not take part in any events of Independence Day if Prof Pandey is not removed from the post of Vice Chancellor, union general secretary Y Sanjoy Singh said in a statement.

S Kula Women’s College Students’ Union, Nambol also demanded the government to resolve the crisis at Manipur University at the earliest. In a statement, union general secretary W Nandarani Chanu urged the government to consider the career of several thousands of students and resolve the issue without any further delay. She asked if the career of thousands of students is less important than that of VC Prof Pandey.

Endorsing the demand for removal VC Pandey, the union also extended full support to the MU community and maintained that it will take active part when called upon.

KAKCHING: Students of Kha Manipur College, Kakching staged a sit in protest demanding removal of professor A P Pandey from the post of VC of Manipur University in front of the college gate on Saturday. The protest was organised by Kha Manipur College, Kakching Students’ Union under the aegis of AMSU, MSF, DESAM, KSA, SUK, AIMS and Joint Colleges Students’ Forum Manipur.

Speaking at the protest site, Kha Manipur College, Kakching Students’ Union general secretary Ksh Subash said that students of the college will support all the agitations launched in connection with the MU issue and the government should resolve the matter as soon as possible so that the results of the semester examinations could be announced and save the career of students.

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