Bhubaneswar: In the backdrop of Wednesday’s clash between two groups of students, the Utkal University PG council for the second consecutive time has decided not to hold students’ union election this year, prompting the political parties to turn to usual mudslinging.
“Last year, the council had announced not to hold elections for an indefinite period. Now, since we are receiving pressure from several quarters to stop the poll process in the wake of recent campus violence, we have decided not to go ahead with it,” PG council chairman Prafulla Mishra said.
The Thursday decision came after the apex body of the varsity ‘failed’ to solve the long -standing issue of the students that led to the violence between two groups on Wednesday night in which at least six hostel borders were injured.
The inmates of the hostel as well as students alleged that their sole demand not to allow outsiders into the university campus has fallen on deaf ears for which several issues are cropping up frequently.
“We can’t understand what for the authorities are here? Since we feel insecure inside the campus mostly during evening time, we have been demanding since long that they (authorities) must check the intrusion of the outsiders who are creating nuisance inside the campus,” rued Alok Mohanty, a student.
“Despite our several attempts to hold discussion with the officials regarding this, they are showing no seriousness towards the issue,” stated he.
But the allegation did not go down well with the officials who refuted the charges of being ‘insensitive’ towards the matter.
Apparently to pacify the agitating students, varsity vice-chancellor Prasant Sahu said, “Definitely we have to check the outsiders at the university gate itself and prevent their illegal entry. However, we are considering to issue identity cards for all the visitors to solve the issue.”
“We'll fix date and time for the visitors coming on official purpose and this will help to reduce the unsocial activities in the campus,” added he.
Twin city police commissioner RP Sharma, after holding a meeting with the varsity officials said, “They will examine on proper frisking and introduction of pass or identity card system for the visitors at the campus gate and absence of which visitors will not be allowed.”
Even as the matter seemed to have been resolved here, political parties found it to be the best turf to fight in the poll-bound State. Both Congress and BJD locked horns over the matter apparently to settle personal score.
Ostensibly hinting at Energy minister Arun Kumar Sahu, Congress leader Lalatendu Vidyadhar Mohapatra said, “After formation of the new committee, some people are thinking to capture Utkal University, the stronghold of Congress and they are behind the cancellation of student election for second consecutive time. But they won’t be able to succeed in their motive.”
On the other hand, Sahu promptly reacted to the Congress leader’s remark.
“We have information from reliable sources that some Congress-backed students after attacking BJD supporters last night are now adopting skin saving trick. Though we don’t want to name them, they should not involve in such nasty politics,” Sahu stated.