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BHU's Sanskrit dept reopens amid students' protest over Muslim prof appointment

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BHU's Sanskrit dept reopens amid students' protest over Muslim prof appointment

India Blooms News Service | @indiablooms | 21 Nov 2019, 08:32 pm

Lucknow/IBNS: Amidst continuous protest by the students over the appointment of Muslim Professor Feroze Khan to teach Sanskrit, the Sanskrit Vidhya Dharm Vijnan at the Banaras Hindu University reopened on Thursday.

In the presence of faculty members, the locks on department buildings were opened at about 3:30 pm, said reports.

The students were urged to return to the classes.

However, they stayed firm on their resolve that the university should revoke Professor Feroze Khan's appointment to the department.

A group of 30-odd students of Sanskrit literature has been protesting for around two weeks demanding the cancellation of Professor Khan's appointment and holding fresh recruitment.

They are of the opinion that a non-Hindu teacher cannot teach a specialised subject like this.

One of the students, as NDTV reported, said they are not citing Khan's religion but saying the tradition is not followed.

"I think the media is distorting it. We are not fighting against someone from any particular religion but we are aghast that things are not happening according to tradition," Krishan Kumar, the protester, has been quoted by NDTV.

Kumar also said Professor Khan must go to the department of Sanskrit and teach.

Meanwhile, the protesting students are also being countered by another group in support of the appointment of Khan.

On Wednesday, a section of these students carried out a march to support him and one of the banners held during the march read: "We are with you Dr Firoze Khan".

Professor Khan, who is disturbed by the whole row, told The Indian Express, "All my life, I learnt Sanskrit and I was never made me realise I am a Muslim, but now when I am trying to teach, suddenly it has become the only subject."

Though no classes were held since he joined the faculty on Nov 7, Khan still believes the students will accept him.

Dev Pujari, the national organisation secretary of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), called the students' protest as "absurd".

Former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati has expressed her support in favour of Khan and said it would be better if the government pays attention to the controversy.

Slamming the government, Mayawati tweeted, "The uncertain attitude of the administration or government is keeping the controversy over PhD. scholar Feroze Khan's appointment on hold. The controversy created by some people who linked education with extreme politics cannot be justified."

"The appointment of a Muslim Sanskrit scholar by BHU as a teacher will be considered as a correct patronage of talent. No one should be allowed to discourage this appointment. It is better if the government pays attention to the matter," she added.

Veteran actor Paresh Rawal said he is "stunned by the protest" of the students to not allow Khan in the Sanskrit faculty.

"Stunned by the protest against professor Feroze Khan. What has language to do with religion? Irony is professor Feroze has done his masters and PhD in Sanskrit (sic)," Paresh Rawal tweeted.

"By same logic great singer late Shri Mohammad Rafi ji should not have sung any bhajans and Naushad Saab should not have composed it," he added.

Meanwhile, Twitter seems to be divided too with some posting in favour of Khan while others backing the protesting students.

One SD Sharma tweeted: "If being a Hindu I expressed my wishes to learn about Urdu so doesn't make a wrong sense. I support #FerozeKhan
#BHU
I oppose this hashtag #BHU_में_फिरोज_कयों"

Another Twitterati Kamlesh Dixit posted: "Shocked by the protest against professor #FerozeKhan! For heaven's sake guys, please stop this idiocy, What language has to do with Religion? Pleasure to know, he has done his PhD in Sanskrit. Infact, feel proud that people of other religions are also attracted to Sanskrit."


A user identified as Prateek Gautam tweeted: "Knowledge of a language doesn't know any boundaries.
Moreover, BHU Students should focus more on learning the language rather than protesting against any Professor's religion.
#FerozeKhan #BHU_में_फिरोज_कयों #BHU."

However, others like Ritesh Pathak expressed solidarity with the protesting students and wrote: "We stand with #BHU students they are not doing wrong.the rituals and method of worship can't be learned by a man who doesn't believe in rituals.its matter of belief.
#FerozeKhan should give resign.this is not matter of politics.
#ISupportBHUStudents
#ISupportBHUStudents"

Another Aloke Shrivastava tweeted: "@SushantBSinha @chitraaum @sardanarohit
please try understand we are not against #FerozeKhan rather we respect and appreciate him but his appointment in the Religion related division and that too against the #BHU's own constitution? How can be this right."

 

BHU's Sanskrit dept reopens amid students' protest over Muslim prof appointment

India Blooms News Service
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