Hyderabad: The English and Foreign Language University Hyderbabad authorities have denied Booker Prize winner and activist Arundhati Roy the permission to address students on the campus on Monday, March 10.
Roy was invited by the student organisations to speak on the topic ‘Fractures of Indian Ideology Re-imaging Democracy and Re-drawing Resistance’ on the first death anniversary of Kashmiri student Muddasir Kamran. Kamran, who belonged to Valley’s Pulwama district, died in mysterious circumstances in the campus last year.
Eflu student organisations DAMSA, SIO, TSA, MSF and PDSU, in memory of Kamran, had organised a talk and had invited Roy.
“On March 4, the five student organisations submitted a request to the university to allot Room No. 1 on the ground floor of the new academic block for the talk on Monday. The university initially granted permission on Friday, March 7.
“However, later in the day, after the working hours, we (members of the student organisations) received a letter from the administrative department seeking details of the programme, including the name of the speakers, topic of discussion and participants. On Saturday, we furnished all the details. In the evening, the Proctor called one of the union leaders and stated that the permission has been denied as the Muddasir Kamran issue is a sensitive one and may spark controversies,” said T. Satish, the head of TSA Student Organisation
“We don’t intend to cause any trouble on the campus. It was just supposed to be an interactive session between the author and students. The student organisations have now decided to hold the talk in front of the university, if a room is not allotted on the campus on Monday. We had got through to Ms Roy after many attempts. She is scheduled to be in town to launch her new book. On Saturday, we could not get in touch with Ms Roy to inform her about the latest development. At the last moment, the university has denied permission claiming that the talk might spark tensions,” said Mohan Dharavath, DAMSA student union president.
Eflu Proctor Prakash Reddy Kona said the permission has denied since such programne might lead to a crisis on the campus. “Linking the programme to the memory of the deceased student (Muddasir Kamran) might lead to a crisis. Also, the organisers had not followed the university norms while applying for the permission,” he claimed.—Agencies