BHU’s VC is a disgrace; should be prosecuted

That a Neanderthal man is the Vice-Chancellor of the prestigious Banaras Hindu University (BHU) is shame enough; that Girish Chandra Tripathi has been not been sacked immediately after his indictment by the National Commission for Women (NCW) is positively infuriating. A couple of goons molest a girl on the campus; the shameless VC says they were just teased (as if that was okay); her complaint is not heeded to; when girls protest, they are mercilessly beaten up by cops. And we pride on being the world’s largest democracy!

The Narendra Modi regime should ensure that the VC is removed at once, if not prosecuted for his criminal negligence of duty and his role in getting the protesting girls beaten up by the police. Every time he opens his mouth, he utters a lie, thus bringing ignominy to the saffron establishment. In an interview to The Indian Express (September 26), he said, “This issue was created. I think this issue was created by outsiders and the shape it took is what is more unfortunate than the initial incident itself.” A white lie, for it was Tripathi and his administration that created the issue by not addressing the concerns of the protesting students.

The NCW has exposed the lie. NCW chairperson Rekha Sharma on Friday told the media, “Had the VC met the girls, violence and police action on the campus could have been averted. It sounds strange that the VC had security threat to meet the girls. A general is worthless if he has no courage to lead the troops.”

He’s also worthless because he’s not just a liar but a consummate liar. There is a mountain of evidence to suggest that he did nothing to make girls safer, and yet has had the audacity to claim, “I am doing my best; the university is doing its best to ensure women’s safety on the campus. We are arranging for streetlights and deploying more guards.” Students on record have said that there are no CCTV cameras on campus, lighting is improper, security guards are too timid to take on any hooligan, and female students are routinely harassed by ruffians. And the VC has the cheek to say such things.

When VC Tripathi is not lying, he is trying to save his skin; he is peddling wild conspiracy theories, trying to present himself as a target just because he is loyal to the saffron dispensation. He wants us to believe that there is a vast and evil plot to destabilize higher education, that the scoundrels who molested the girl were not perverts but the soldiers of a nefarious design. And Tripathi himself, his fairy tale goes, is the knight in shining armor protecting the good empire of Modiji.

Except that this self-styled knight in shining armor doesn’t come to the rescue of the damsels in distress; he doesn’t do anything himself; he asks girls to become sanskari instead—no short skirts, limited access to the Net and the library, strict controls on their movements.

“Some people with vested interests and ulterior motives have triggered this incident. The students, if they had a grievance or complaint, should have suggested to the university to do something. But there is a mindset to disturb institutions of higher learning. BHU is not alone. Every university in the country is being disturbed… The victim [is being] used her for political gains,” he said.

Of course, Leftist and Congress-affiliated students have vested interests and ulterior motives, but when those who with no links to politics complain about a problem, as the girls in the present instant did, the BHU administration chose to turn a deaf ear to their complaint. When they protested, cops were unleashed on them.

It is a serious matter, for police cannot enter a university premises without the permission of its vice-chancellor. He asked them to cow down the protesting students instead of throwing the molesters behind bars; this has been confimed. According to the NCW’s Sharma, the Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) concerned has informed her that the police entered the campus on repeated calls of the VC. “We were told by the girls that their peaceful agitation was hijacked by those people who were involved in eve-teasing. Almost all the girls whom we met said that eve-teasing is very common on the campus and BHU boys are involved,” she said.

Which is hardly surprising, for in VC Tripathi’s scheme of things the girls who complain about sexual harassment actually “sell their modesty in the market.” Come to think of it, this grandee was appointed by a government that swears by beti bachao, beti padao.

Obviously, the VC is not cooperating with the NCW team. He is not taking their phone calls and messages. “He will be summoned to Delhi to appear before the Commission to record his statement,” Sharma said.

The Modi regime can save further embarrassment to itself and its ideology by immediately sacking VC Tripathi, a medieval misogynist; he is a disgrace to not just the government but also to the nation. Still better, he should be prosecuted.


Photo courtesy: BHU website