The relationship between JNU and the Centre has been a tumultuous one recently. A deep mistrust in the minds of the student community and a less than the diplomatic route to handle them by the government has resulted in a sort of standoff, where words are being exchanged on both sides and nothing more.
A majority of JNU politics exist on the opposite end of the spectrum as compared to the current government. And as is custom, the other side tries to suppress their opponents views and channel their ideology.
Sab ideology ka khel hai
In this rush towards ideological dominance, the incumbents have taken many steps to crack down on what according to them, is a rabid group of anti-nationalist traitors. Through the crackdown on JNU, the arrest and trial of Kanhaiya and Co. And then the refusal of democratic spaces to students, followed by the implicit nod to the student body to create the ruckus, the incumbents have tried to establish themselves in this space.
It was exactly this that made me wonder that whether the recent decision to replace the JNU GSCASH by something called the ICC, taken by the Vice-Chancellor was something born out of genuine, valid concerns or just another measure in this ideological dominance race.
The GSCASH () was formed in 1999 as a body to monitor all sexual harassment complaints and to sensitize the students about issues relating to sexuality. The model of the JNU GSCASH was so successful that it became an inspiration for many such organizations all over India.
What made it so popular was the fact that it was democratic at the very root, unlike other complaint bodies. Its members were elected and as a result, the issues pertaining to it were heavily debated, albeit at election time.
This gave rise to a wave of sensitization and understanding across the university and body flourished, but then uske bhi acche din aa gaye
2 days ago, the Registrar issued a notice which mandated the dissolution of the JNU GSCASH, citing some UGC norms which the body supposedly violated. Instead, a body known as the ICC will be set up.
And Here lies the problem as the ICC will have only 3 elected members and the rest will be nominated by the administration, taking away the democratic process which made gender sensitization in JNU such a wonderful thing.
And it is precisely because of this totally authoritarian move that I feel this is part of the larger campaign to gradually camp down on this bastion of dissent.
If the administration did this out of genuine legal of logistical reason, fine, that is their prerogative. But taking other events into account, the imposition of ideology school of thought is more meritorious.
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