Dalit students raise apprehensions over JNU library renaming

New Delhi, June 23 (IANS) Dalit students of Jawaharlal Nehru University have raised apprehensions about renaming the varsity’s central library as B.R. Ambedkar Library following demands from the Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP).

“Renaming JNU’s central library as B.R. Ambedkar Library is denigrating, demeaning and disrespecting to Babasaheb Ambedkar,” JNU Ph.D research scholar and activist of Birsa Ambedkar Phule Students’ Association (BAPSA) Jadumanilion Bauddha said in a Facebook post on Wednesday.

BAPSA is a student organisation in JNU.

The JNU Executive Council on Monday decided to rename the varsity library after the Dalit icon. ABVP has been demanding renaming of the library after Ambedkar after the controversial February 9 incident where anti-national slogans were allegedly raised on the campus.

“In the last 40 years of JNU, Ambedkar was nowhere… betrayed by progressive Left, ignored by Congress… now BJP is trying to demean and appropriating by renaming, throwing a piece of bread. ABVP demands are to fool the university student and faculty communities,” he further wrote.

“Renaming library is nothing but to eyes wash the institutional murder/discrimination of so many Dalit and Adivasi students across the country, in particular struggle of Dalit students in JNU campus. I strongly oppose renaming of JNU’s Central library on B. R. Ambedkar,” Bauddha added.

Earlier this week, JNU Students Union vice president Shehla Rashid also criticised the decision to rename the library after Ambedkar saying that the move is an eyewash to hide the murder of Rohith Vemula, the Dalit scholar from Hyderabad Central University, who committed suicide in January this year.



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