Buet agitators heading towards Bangabhaban

The sit-in initiated by Buet demonstrators stepped into fifth straight day on Sunday as its vice-chancellor assumed an extreme rigid position over not stepping down from his post.

Prof SM Nazrul Islam, vice-chancellor of Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (Buet), in the morning reiterated his decision saying that he and his deputy Prof Habibur Rahman are not going to resign which is the key demand of the agitating students, teachers and employees of Buet, reports ABC radio.

For the sake of country's interest, he would however accept any proposal of President Zillur Rahman, the VC said.

Meanwhile, the demonstrators are set to submit a memorandum on Sunday to the president who is also the chancellor of the university.

Hundreds of demonstrators have taken all-out preparation to march towards the president's Bangabhaban residence to submit a memo demanding resignation of the institution's vice-chancellor and pro-vice-chancellor.

The Buet crisis took a new turn on Saturday as a group of teachers, students and employees of the university termed illogical the ongoing movement of the teachers association against the two top administration bosses.

A new forum, holding a press conference at the university cafeteria in the afternoon, urged the agitating teachers and students to call off their movement and go back to the classroom.

They alleged that the Buet Teachers Association had incited students into joining the agitation for the removal of the vice-chancellor and his deputy.

On Saturday, the demonstrators marched across the campus in a silent procession and went to the Central Shaheed Minar and vowed to continue their movement until the demands were met.

Students launched a website to draw the attention of former Buet students living abroad and a mass signature campaign to strengthen their movement.

Prof SM Nazrul Islam still could not sit with the agitating teachers, although Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at a Gono Bhaban meeting on Thursday asked him to reach a settlement through talks.

The Buet Teachers Association, which is spearheading the demonstrations, said it had rejected a letter sent from the VC proposing discussions.

Since April 7, the association has been staging protests demanding the resignation of the two top administration bosses. It has levelled 16 allegations against them, among which are the appointment of the pro-VC and a deputy registrar on “political consideration”.

The agitating teachers returned to the classrooms on May 5 on the prime minister's assurance of resolving the problems.

On Wednesday, they again started demonstrating and 25 heads of faculties, departments and institutes resigned en masse as the VC and pro-VC refused to quit. The university declared a 44-day vacation from the same day.

The movement gained momentum with the joining of students and staff.

News Source: 
The Daily Star