Kolkata: The Calcutta High Court today directed the West Bengal government to inform through an affidavit the steps it has taken to restore normalcy in Jadavpur University including the details of police action on students on the intervening night of September 16 and 17.
Acting on a PIL filed by a professor who does not teach at the university, a division bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice Asim Banerjee directed the state to put on record steps it has taken to restore normalcy and submit the affidavit by Wednesday, when the matter would be taken up for hearing again.
The court noted that the West Bengal Governor, who is the Chancellor of the University, has already sought a report on the incident.
The court said that the situation in the prestigious university had reached a stage where the authorities of the university failed to tackle the situation and had to call in state authorities to do so.
The bench observed that the state has the authority to act to maintain law and order, but hastened to add that it should not, however, be done arbitrarily or illegally.
The bench observed that it may be 20 per cent of the students are agitating while the other 80 per cent want to study.
Petitioner Bimal Shankar Nanda, associate professor at Charuchandra College affiliated to the Calcutta University, prayed for restoration of normalcy in the university and that classes be allowed to be held, claiming that the agitating students were not allowing the registrar or other senior officials and professors to enter the university campus.
The counsel for Jadavpur University submitted that the students were so violent that the vice-chancellor had been forced to call the police and claimed that the vice-chancellor had been restrained in his office since evening.
The university authorities also stated that it wanted to place a police picket inside the campus and restrain outsiders from entering the campus.
Several students and policemen were injured and 35 students arrested after the police acted on a requisition by vice-chancellor Abhijit Chakraborty to lift a gherao of him and other senior university officials.
The V-C had later claimed that he might have been killed had not the police come to his rescue by breaking up the gherao.