BHU Vice Chancellor G C Tripathi Goes on Indefinite Leave

Varanasi, Oct 2: Days after violence at Benaras Hindu University (BHU) campus, Girish Chandra Tripathi, the Vice Chancellor, has reportedly gone on leave citing personal reasons. G C Tripathi, who was scheduled to retire on November 30, has gone on “indefinite leave”, reported PTI quoting BHU sources. Last week, the BHU Vice Chancellor said that he will step down if he is asked to go on a leave.

There have been reports that G C Tripathi was under pressure by the Human Resources and Development (HRD) Ministry to go on leave. The ministry has reportedly begun the process to find his successor as well. Sources at the BHU said the central government was upset with the manner in which Tripathi handled the entire episode, including a protest by women students following an incident of alleged harassment. Varanasi Commissioner Nitin Gokarn, in his preliminary report to Uttar Pradesh chief secretary Rajiv Kumar, also blamed the BHU administration for the violence at the university campus.

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Earlier, G C Tripathi had maintained that the HRD ministry had not told him to go on ‘leave’. He had said it would be insulting to go on leave and that he will prefer quitting. “So far, nothing of this sort has been communicated to me. I have been in touch with the HRD Minister (Prakash Javadekar) right from the day of the incident and have briefed him about the situation as well as the measures taken. But if am I asked to go on leave, I will resign,” the Vice Chancellor was quoted as saying.

The alleged eve-teasing incident had happened on the night of September 21 after which the students started a protest near the university’s main gate. A woman student of the Arts Faculty was allegedly harassed by three motorcycle-borne men inside the campus while she was returning to her hostel.

According to the complainant, the men abused her and fled when she resisted their attempts. The woman alleged that security guards, about 100 metres from where the incident happened, did nothing to stop them. She said her warden, instead of taking up the issue with her superiors, asked her why was she was returning late to the hostel. The warden’s response angered the students who sat on a ‘dharna’ at the main gate midnight Thursday.

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