Protests demanding hostel for students at Visva-Bharati flare up

    Kolkata, Dec 14 (PTI) The Visva-Bharati university on Wednesday alleged that students agitating over the allotment of hostels hurled stones at vice-chancellor Bidyut Chakraborty and registrar Ashok Mahato, following which their protest camp was dismantled.
    The incident happened on Tuesday evening when Chakraborty was returning to his official residence from his office, a spokesperson of the varsity told PTI.
    The agitating students, however, denied the allegation and claimed that they were roughed up by the varsity's security guards.
    "A few students are holding violent agitation, disrupting the function of the varsity, since November 24. They were preventing the VC from working. He went to the office on Tuesday, and when he was returning, they heckled him. Stones were also hurled at his residence. Several security guards were injured," the spokesperson claimed.
    Later in the night, stones were also hurled at the registrar's residence from the protest camp, she said.
    The protest camp set up by the students was dismantled by the varsity's security after it was found that boulders and stones were gathered there for the attacks, she claimed.
    Officers of the Shantiniketan police station were at the spot when the camp was dismantled, officials said.
    Mahato on Wednesday wrote to the police, asking for security, following the incident. He said his wife and daughter were living in fear at the official quarters after the attack.
    However, the SFI dismissed the varsity's allegations, terming those a "pack of lies".
    "Without hearing the demands of the students, the vice-chancellor misbehaved with them. The security guards even thrashed some protesting female students," alleged Somnath Sow, an SFI activist at the varsity.
    "Most shockingly, the registrar led the security guards to raze our camp. None of us were involved in the hurling of stones at anyone. These are lies to defame us," he alleged.
    The protesters were demanding immediate allotment of hostels for all outstation students, and timely completion of PhD and M Phil papers of researchers.
    "We also demand the VC's resignation for his role against democratic protests," Sow said. PTI SUS

(This story has not been edited by THE WEEK and is auto-generated from PTI)