Students call off protest over BCL committee at Chattogram University

It comes after Deputy Education Minister Mohibul Hassan Chowdhury took to social media to address the issue

Chattogram Bureau
Published : 2 August 2022, 07:46 AM
Updated : 2 August 2022, 07:46 AM

Students aggrieved at the new Bangladesh Chhatra League for Chattogram University have ended their blockade of the campus after more than a day of protests.

It came after Deputy Minister of Education Mohibul Hassan Chowdhury took to social media to address the issue on Tuesday.

"The main purpose of our movement was to draw the attention of our leader [Mohibul] to the fact that many of us did not get any post in the committee," said Delwar Hossain, a protester.

"We now know that our leader is aware of the issue. It's up to him to decide whether we will get any posts."

Protests have roiled the university since the early hours of Monday after the announcement of the 376-member committee by the ruling party's student affiliate on its official Facebook page.

Those who missed out on their preferred posts in the committee or were completely overlooked descended on the campus along with their supporters and locked the university's main entrance.

Later, Deputy Minister Mohibul issued a statement on Facebook in which he urged the agitated students to take up their demands with the Chhatra League leadership and resolve the issue through discussions.

"The destruction of the university's academic atmosphere, vandalism, abduction and threats to kill and commit crimes are not befitting of ideologically-motivated members of a student body," he said.

"Those who are doing these things are anarchists driven by personal interests. They do not seem to value the organisation or education," he added.

Mohibul also called on the BCL and the university authorities not to give any leeway to the miscreants.

The protests had crippled Chattogram University as the authorities suspended shuttle services amid security concerns after protesters detained a train driver on Monday, according to Proctor Robiul Hasan Bhuiyan.

Classes and examinations were also put on hold.

According to the protesters, many devoted leaders and activists of the Chhatra League were denied posts in this committee in favour of 'non-students, drug addicts and BNP-Jamaat sympathisers'.

They later placed five demands at a press conference on Monday.

These included the expulsion of Md Ilyas, the joint general secretary of the new committee, who they accused of being a 'non-student, yaba dealer and tender monger'.

They also called for all non-students, married persons and those with links to the BNP and Jamaat-e-Islam to be replaced by 50 dedicated and meritorious students, while maintaining a seniority-based hierarchy.

On Jul 14, 2019, Rezaul Haque was appointed as president of the Chhatra League CU unit and Iqbal Hossain as general secretary. They were tasked with forming a fully-fledged committee within a month of their appointments, but that did not materialise. But it took three years for a new committee to be announced.

Toufique Imrose Khalidi
Editor-in-Chief and Publisher