Kochi: The Cochin University of Science and Technology (CUSAT) has “restricted” the use of mobile phones by students in the campus, invoking protests from student unions including the SFI. Interestingly, the university order didn’t have any direct reference to mobile phones, but instead used the word ‘audio-video recording machines’. “We’ll stage a protest on Monday against the move which is questionable. They’ve earlier restricted social media. The sole purpose is to prevent airing of anti-student initiatives and harassments to outside world,” said A.K. Gufran, SFI unit oresident.
The move comes nearly a month after the university suspended three faculty members, including the Head of Marine Geology and Geophysics for “mentally harassing” a girl student. The latter, using her mobile phone, had recorded a video of her professors allegedly hurling bad words at her which resulted in the punitive action. “The decision was taken based on the incident. The Marine Geology department head had requested the measure on November three. Though the punitive action was meted out on November 17, the authorities fear the students could misuse their mobiles,” sources said.
Earlier the Marine Geology department head had requested for acting citing that the “use of audio-video recording devices by students without permission…will question the morality of the department as well as the discipline maintained in the department”. “Considering the request, the Vice-Chancellor has ordered to restrict the audio/video recording devices by students without permission in all Departments,” reads the order issued by the Joint Registrar, Academics.