It was full drama on the campus of Maharani Girls College under the Rajasthan University here two days back when the College Principal herself came out to stop the students from going to the State Assembly for witnessing the proceedings of the House. Girl students in dozens were found battling with the staff and the Principal Dr.Alpana Kateja as buses intended to carry them to the State Assembly premises were stopped forcibly by the college authorities and the students were evicted. There ensued a ding-dong battle and a wordy duel which lasted till the afternoon.
The drama was enacted again on Friday when some of the students, accompanied by their parents, reached the college to seek an explanation from the Principal. Furious arguments followed inside the Principal's office as the students and the parents sought to know as to why they were stopped from visiting the Assembly. There was no logical conclusion. Perhaps the attrition would continue in the days to come and it is bound to, as the elections to the Rajasthan University students union is scheduled in the third week of this month.
As per the statement was given by one of the students who was stopped forcibly, the first incident took place on August 2 when dozens of students, seated in buses sent by President of Law College Manvinder Budania to transport them to the Vidhan Sabha, were evicted forcibly. According to the student, who does not want to be named, even the Principal Dr Kateja joined the staff in pulling out the students from the buses. “We wanted to see the place from where our law makers function but were surprised by the ferocious opposition from the college authorities. Moreover, as we had completed our lectures and were planning to head for the Assembly after the college hours we thought we were doing the right thing,” she noted.
Supporting the student's view was the science teacher Divya Sharma (name changed on request). “I was an eyewitness to the incident when the girls were dragged out of the buses and assaulted”. “Foul language was used by the Principal and the staff. This is unbecoming of the Principal of a reputed girls' college,” she noted.
However, the Principal had her own story to tell. When Catch News approached Dr.Kateja, she explained. “We stopped the girls because they were going out during the college hour without our permission. Being the Principal of the college I have some responsibilities and cannot allow my girls to wander about the city during classes.” When asked if she had misbehaved and assaulted the girls, she refuted the charges and blamed the students of manipulating things to take advantage in the forthcoming student union elections.
Manvinder Budania, President of Law College, who had arranged the buses to take the students to the Assembly, when asked about the furore, said, “Yes, I had sent the buses but during post college hours as I am well aware of the decorum of the college”.
Well, the contradictory statements may not throw much light on what exactly happened on the campus on Wednesday and Friday. However that day some students managed to visit the Rajasthan Assembly as passes were ready for them for the period between 2 pm and 3 pm. The lucky ones were those who could manage some conveyance on their own as the buses were blocked from moving out.