Student furore against 75% attendance rule for all subjects in JNU

“What kind of attendance they are talking about when we PhD students do not even have classes,” a PhD student said after Jawaharlal Nehru University made 75% attendance compulsory for students of all courses.

Teachers have to mark attendance with the signature of students which then would have to be submitted to the central office of the university.

The directive which becomes effective from this winter session, will apply to all part-time and BA, MA, M.Sc., M. Tech, MPH, PG Diploma and M.Phil. students.

60% attendance would be enough for students who can justify their absence on valid medical grounds, to sit for end semester exams.

A total leave of 30 days in an academic year is allowed officially with permission from the supervisor.

Now, it is mandatory for the MPhil and PhD students to attend at least two contact sessions with the supervisor.

The leave will be a part of their tenure of MPhil or PhD program. According to the circular as published by the institution, it is compulsory for all students to sign the attendance register every day.

When America celebrated ‘Not My President’s Day’

On the occasion of Presidents Day on February 20  Americans protested to condemned current President Donald Trump. Thousands of Americans took the streets for ‘Not My President’s Day’ rallies in the cities across the countries.

People protested against his travel ban, and his victory despite a popular vote defeat. Zack Winestine who is a researcher from lower Manhattan carried a sign which called the election illegitimate, Daily News New York reported. He said, “Technically, the people did not elect him. For him to be governing as though he has a mandate on the far right is not legitimate. Russia intervened in this election. The FBI intervened in the election. Trump himself ran a campaign based on lies and misrepresentations never before seen in modern American politics. He does not represent the will of the American people.”

Twenty people helped in organising these rallies in Los Angeles, Chicago and New York. Olga Lexell, one of the 20 people, said that the intention of the rallies and protest were to show President Trump that people are against his policies and executive orders.

People in the rallies chanted, “In the name of humanity, fascist America — No! No! No! No! No!,” Moreover, merchants were selling T-shirts which read “Not My President” with a sub-text “Elected but not chosen.”

News Source: ANI,  Daily News New York

Image Source: Rex Features

Anti-Trump Riot in Mexico City Attended by Thousands

Thousands held a march in Mexico City protesting against the US President Donald Trump. The former real estate mogul turned president proposed to build a wall along the American-Mexican border during his campaigns and to build the wall, he plans to charge the American citizens in the their taxes.

Placards, posters and banners saying “Mexico must be respected, Mr Trump,” were seen in the protest along with numerous others waving the red, white and green Mexican flag. In what is touted as the largest mobilisation so far, protestors were seen burning Trump effigies.

According to the Los Angeles Times, Garcia, a former resident of Chicago said “The United States and Mexico are natural friends and allies, but Trump is destroying this,”. She then added, “The United States and Mexico are natural friends and allies, but Trump is destroying this”.

More than 20,000 people attended the march according to a city estimate. While this was seen as a massive gathering, reports said that the protest was small compared to other rallies and protests which took place in the city. Along with anti-Trump protest, rioters also chanted slogans and carried signs against Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto.

Protest marches also took place Sunday in other Mexican cities, including Tijuana, Monterrey, Merida and Morelia.

Sources: Los Angeles Times, CNN

Image source: iNews24

Protests over PETA’s stand on Jallikattu reaches Pune

The protests over People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals’ (PETA) stand on Jallikattu that have taken over the State of of Tamil Nadu have stretched its arms to Pune, with supporters flocking to the city’s streets on Saturday. The Chakan area saw several hundred protesters expressing their displeasure of PETA’s interference in the traditional practice.

Focusing on the importance of cultural sensitivity in such issues and expressing displeasure over the government’s decision, the leader of the protest at Chakan, Ramkrishna Takalkar of Takalkarwadi said to the Indian Express, “We love our animals. We can’t think of treating them cruelly. We take great care of them. But PETA, which is an American organisation, is charging us with ill-informed allegations. They don’t know our culture.” Takalkar, who owns bulls that participate in races, added that this decision could directly affect the lives of farmers.

Jalikkattu brings opportunities for small farmers from the dry regions of Maan in Satara and Jat, Khanapur in Sangli districts who rear Khilar breed of bulls. These bulls are sold to the owners of racing carts. The price may range between Rs 20,000 and Rs one lakh, based on the quality of animals. Income from this serves as an additional economic leverage to several families of the arid regions.

In Pune especially, special care is taken so as to not harm the animals. In an effort to ensure that the animals are not victims of any form of physical abuse, no person is allowed to ride on the carts. The bulls are given a free run, reflects Takalkar.


5 Policemen Dead, 7 Injured in Dallas Shootings

A peaceful protest in downtown Dallas turned chaotic when snipers opened fire on policemen on guard, killing 5 and injuring 7. Officials have not confirmed yet whether this incident is connected to the fatal shootings of two black men by the police earlier this week, but sources speculate that this might be a regrettable aftermath.

The attack was said to be carefully planned and highly coordinated as fresh gunfire broke out a little before 9 p.m., during the protests, where the snipers began shooting the officers. Protestors ran for cover, while the policemen on duty engaged in heavy gunfire with the suspects, who had settled on an elevated platform.

According to Mike Rawlings, Mayor of Dallas, SWAT officers arrived on scene and a three-hour long exchange of gunfire took place, where two civilians were caught in the crossfire as well. David Brown, Police Chief said that the gunmen threatened stating that there were explosives all over the place, but immediate disposal of the bomb squad did not churn up any devices.

Of the four snipers, one killed himself, while the other three have been arrested by the police officers. The dedication and bravery of the officers on scene was highly commended by the chief and officials around the country alike.

Addressing the event, Obama called it, “vicious, calculated and despicable”. The attack is said to be one of the worst on law enforcement since the attacks of 9/11.

Afzal Guru protests: Police slap charges of sedition, conspiracy

The students affiliated to the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) organised protest outside the prestigious Jawaharlal Nehru University to vent their disappointment over a programme terming the execution of 2001 Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru as judicial killing.
The protest witnessed violent clashes between two students groups last night, following which the police personnel had to be deployed on duty to maintain the law and order situation in the campus. The main aim is to kick out the anti- national groups who support Afzal. Their activities are required to be monitored by Police Commissioner Rajesh Bahl.

While the organisers originally got the permission to hold this event, it was withdrawn after the ABVP complained to the administration. Terming the activity as ‘anti- national’, the ABVP had called for a protest outside the campus. They also demanded the resignation of the ten students who were behind the event. The students were earlier members of the Democratic Students’ Union.

Sources: The Indian ExpressPTI

Nepal’s Madhesis call off India-Nepal border blockade

Nepal’s agitated Samyukta Loktantrik Madhesi Morcha (SLMM) called off their nearly five-month long blockade at Indo-Nepal border. The end of the protest brings about relief to the country suffering from shortages of fuels, medicines and other supplies.

A statement issued after the meeting of United Democratic Madhesi Front leaders said that considering the current crisis facing the nation and the public necessity and aspirations, the ongoing protest programmes of general strike, border blockade, government office shutdown have been called off for now. The statement also said that the agitation shall continue till the demands are addressed.

This announcement comes ahead of Prime Minister KP Oli’s Indian trip, that is scheduled on February 19, which is the first overseas visit of the new Nepalese premier.

Based in the Tarai lowlands, the Madhesi Front launched the protest in September to force Nepal’s major political parties to make amends in the new charter and give them a greater role in the power structure thus bringing about a new Constitution.

The main border point at Birgunj has seen trucks move about for the first time in more than four months on Friday after the protesters were chased away. It was opened briefly, but it was closed again. Except the border point Birgunj, trade has resumed at all other posts.

To see to it that the Madhesis participate in the parliament, Nepal made changes to the constitution. But the community leaders state that the amendments still fail to address their central fear of division of their ancestral homeland under the seven-province structure.

Sources: Reuters, DNA