NEW DELHI: Jawaharlal Nehru University Teachers Association has issued a strong statement against the administration for its “policy of intimidation” against the students calling for a one day strike on January 17.

Signed by JNUTA president Professor Ajay Patnaik and secretary Dr Bikramaditya Choudhary the statement reads:

“ It is painful to know that despite JNUTA’s request, JNU Administration has chosen to continue with its policy of intimidation through letters to colleagues for speaking in public to the students in their own space.

In total disregard of democratic practices, the moves by the Administration are aimed at discouraging colleagues from speaking against the covert and overt attempts to alter the progressive admission policy of JNU.

The forced changes are not only against the principle of social justice but also in contravention of several Supreme Court Judgments. JNUTA condemns such authoritarian moves of the JNU administration. JNU teachers have given their best to ensure social justice and basic human right of free speech and would continue to do so. It is not only shocking to see that JNU administration under present VC is out to silence any possible critique and run the university through discretionary powers and arbitrariness.

JNUTA is concerned about the shrinking of democratic space in the campus. This administration on one or the other pretext has attacked that space in a sustained manner. The unethical and illegal recording of activities of faculty and students by JNU administration and use of selective and unauthenticated video footage against our faculty colleagues in statutory body meetings is highly condemnable. JNUTA once again urges the Vice Chancellor to desist from unethical and illegal surveillance against teachers, students or any member of JNU Community.

In this hour of all out attack on “free speech” by JNU administration, JNUTA would like to reassert its privilege to call upon a public lecture series at the Administrative Block in JNU as it is well within its democratic rights. JNUTA announces the organizing of Public Lectures on the theme, “Democratizing Social Justice”, from 18th January to 25th January 2017 to give a clear message that teachers of JNU would not be cowed down by threats and intimidation. We are happy to share with the world outside that our Lecture Series on “what nation really needs to know”, which is out as a book (by Harper Collins) and would be released on 25th January.

Further, we would like to assure the JNU administration that our constructive resistance in all forms against any of its undemocratic and authoritarian move would continue unabated. Lastly, JNUTA would like to reiterate its position that it will oppose all efforts to intimidate, threaten or persecute individuals including teachers and students from any institution across the world which is done to silence voices of dissent. In protest against the continuous administrative threat and intimidation to teacher colleagues, JNUTA calls upon all colleagues to participate in a One day strike on January 17th 2017.