In a letter to the President of India, Ram Nath Kovind, who is also a visitor to the Banaras Hindu University (BHU), the faculty and former professors of the university have come out in support of students opposing the appointment of Firoze Khan to the Sanskrit Vidya Dharm Vigyaan department (faculty of theology).
They have called for the immediate annulment of the appointment of Feroze Khan to the Department and place him in any other Sanskrit teaching department of the University.
Pointing out that the appointment of Khan was done by violating the tradition and established norms of the University the letter says, "Sanskrit Vidya Dharm Vigyaan department should not be tinkered with as the appointment of any non-Hindu is against the established norms and tradition of the department."
Speaking to ANI, 88-year-old former BHU Professor Rewa Prasad Dwivedi, who is also emeritus professor, SVDVS stated that the department would become irrelevant of such appeasement continues. " No one would come for further studies here if appointments of non-Hindus is made to the department."
The professors have pointed out that the department has been operating for over 100 years. "The appointment of any non-Hindu to the department would cause disruption to the religious, tradition, karma kanda education of students training to be acharyas and shartris of the religion," the submission adds.
"The students of this department can't be forced to study under a Muslim or Christian teacher. If this is down it is going to lead to unprecedented chaos and the acharya parampara would become void," the letter read.
If educated under a non Hindu the doors of employment and religious practices by Hindu organisations would be forever closed for these students, the letter adds. They have pointed out it may also lead to trouble in the future employment of such students at various Hindu temples.
The submission to the President points out that the university came into being under the guidance of Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya and the Faculty of Theology was established to study the religious texts, scriptures of religions like Sanatan Hindu Dharma and its associate religions of Indian origin like Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism.
The faculty also studies various religious rituals, astrology, scriptures and other religious literature related to these religions.
The submission to the President has the signatures of over 50 serving and retired members of the Sanskrit Vidya Dharm Vigyaan department.