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Business News/ News / India/  BBC documentary row: CURAJ suspends 10 students for 2 weeks
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BBC documentary row: CURAJ suspends 10 students for 2 weeks

Though the varsity authorities claimed that the suspension of the students was not linked to them watching the documentary, India: The Modi Question.

File: People watch the screening of the BBC documentary 'India: The Modi Question', in Thiruvananthapuram. (PTI) (HT_PRINT)Premium
File: People watch the screening of the BBC documentary 'India: The Modi Question', in Thiruvananthapuram. (PTI) (HT_PRINT)

Central University of Rajasthan (CURAJ)'s ten students were suspended for two weeks on 29 January after they allegedly gathered on the campus to watch a controversial BBC documentary on the 2002 Gujarat riots.

Though the varsity authorities claimed that the suspension of the students was not linked to them watching the documentary, India: The Modi Question.

The disciplinary action has been taken against the students for allegedly disobeying the instructions of authorities and carrying out a late-night demonstration at an undesignated site, according to the university order.

As per the order, the students have been suspended from the academics as well as the hostel for disobeying the instructions of teachers or the authorities and demonstrating in late hours at places other than designated sites, the suspension order read. The alleged incident took place on January 26.

ALSO READ: Congress screens controversial BBC documentary on PM Modi at Kerala's beach

CURAJ Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) president Vikash Pathak claimed that invitations for the screening of the controversial documentary on Gujarat riots near the campus canteen were circulated on social media.

Pathak said that they had opposed the students who were gathering to watch the documentary.

Also, two policemen had reached the spot to avoid any untoward incident, Bander Sindri police Station House Officer (SHO) Kalu Lal said.

Earlier on 29 January, around 25-30 students gathered with covered faces and they were dispersed from the spot, police said.

An NGO People's Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) has written to CURAJ Vice-Chancellor Anand Bhalerao opposing the action against the students.

"Eight are Muslim, one is Christian and one is Hindu. The PUCL is clear that no screening of any film happened on the 26th of January, 2023. And the question of individual viewing on mobiles is a private matter and comes within the right to privacy of the students," the organisation said in a statement.

University authorities, however, said the action on the students has no connection with the watching of the documentary and said it was "a routine disciplinary action." "The action wasn't taken over screening of the documentary. It was a normal, routine, disciplinary action taken against these students, which is a routine activity of an academic institution," a university spokesperson said.

It is to be known that the Centre has issued directions for blocking multiple YouTube videos and Twitter posts sharing links to the controversial BBC documentary.

The Ministry of External Affairs has trashed the documentary as a "propaganda piece" that lacks objectivity and reflects a colonial mindset.

With PTI inputs.

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Published: 29 Jan 2023, 09:45 PM IST
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