Osmania varsity says no to Rahul Gandhi, Cong sees KCR"s hand in denial

  • | Monday | 2nd May, 2022

Hyderabad, May 2 (PTI) The Osmania University has refused permission to Congress leader Rahul Gandhi for a meeting with its students and while the national party was outraged, its cadres staged a protest on Monday as well decrying the decision and the arrest of their colleagues in this connection. The Congress party slammed Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao and claimed that his pressure tactics resulted in the varsity"s denial of permission. On the denial of permission, a university official told PTI that it was due to various reasons, including the university’s Executive Council passing a resolution last year not to allow any political activity on the campus. Also, election of some employees unions have been scheduled, examinations for certain courses were underway and a section of students are also preparing for recruitment tests recently announced by the state government, the varsity official said. Following the university"s refusal of permission to the Congress leader to hold an interactive session with students on May 7, the party"s students" wing (National Students Union of India-NSUI) held a protest here on Sunday and at least 18 protesters were arrested. Telangana Congress president and MP, A Revanth Reddy said Rahul Gandhi plans to meet arrested NSUI leaders on May 7, lodged at the Chanchalguda jail here, to speak to them on issues faced by students. Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao "pressured" the university authorities to deny permission to Rahul Gandhi"s meeting, Reddy alleged. Earlier, the state Congress chief visited the NSUI leaders at the prison. The state Congress president said a letter has been submitted to the jail superintendent seeking permission for Rahul Gandhi to meet the arrested NSUI leaders. On Rahul Gandhi"s proposal to meet students, the Congress leader said an interaction was planned with students to understand their concerns and other relevant issues for the betterment of both students and the varsity as well and for raising such issues in the Parliament. The OU, which was a hub of separate Telangana agitation by the students years ago, was the alma mater of late P V Narasimha Rao, M Chenna Reddy, S Jaipal Reddy and several other veteran leaders, he said. Activists of NSUI, held a protest today inside the OU campus over denial of permission to Rahul Gandhi"s meeting and the arrest of NSUI leaders. The protesting NSUI members, who raised slogans against the TRS government and the university authorities, were taken away by the police. Further, the varsity official said that considering the Executive Council resolution, no political activity has been allowed in the campus during the last one year, he pointed out. Congress party shared with media a letter written by OU Registrar to Koturi Manavatha Roy, who was one of the applicants for Gandhi’s meeting in the campus, saying it is not feasible for the university to accord permission for the meeting. Enraged over the denial of permission, a group of activists of NSUI allegedly hurled stones at the main door of the varsity"s Administrative Building on Sunday after which at least 18 of them were arrested by police. Similarly, police also took few NSUI activists into custody after they attempted to lay siege to the Ministers" Quarters here on Sunday protesting the denial of permission by the university administration. Dismissing the allegations levelled by the Congress against the TRS government, party leader and state Energy Minister G Jagadish Reddy said there is no need for the ruling party to stop anybody’s meetings. The Congress is trying to create unrest at Osmania University as its hopes of gaining popularity among youth have been dashed with Chief Minister Chandrasekhar Rao issuing notifications for recruitment in government departments, Jagadish Reddy said in a release today. Meanwhile, some students of OU, associated with NSUI, moved the Telangana High Court today seeking directions to the varsity to allow Rahul Gandhi"s visit. The petitioners submitted that Rahul Gandhi wants to meet the varsity"s students as well as unemployed youth for the purpose of nation building, and that there is no chance of creation of any law and order problems. It is purely a meeting of students and interaction and not a political one, they said. The court after hearing the matter today posted it to May 4. PTI SJR VVK VGN ROH ROH

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