Bengaluru: While there is some restlessness among the NLSIU students on losing their freedom over ‘dressing of their choice’ with possible chances of a dress code coming into effect during the administrative meeting on April 11, the management learnt the hard way by not taking up complaints at the right time, lodged by the student as well as the professor on Monday, immediately after the incident.
“If at all the Vice Chancellor (VC) had looked into the complaint and initiated some sort of an action, at least a ‘status quo ante’, these repercussions could have been averted,” said a senior faculty member, who wished to remain anonymous.
“Prof. V. Nagaraj is feeling let down by the administration, as the VC neither reacted nor intervened immediately into the complaint, or else perhaps it could have been sorted out then and there. Why did he choose not to intervene or even hand over the responsibility to somebody?” he added.
It looks like the administration and the faculty are divided over the issue. Defending the Professor Nagaraj in question, a source at the university stated, “Prof Nagaraj has been working for over three decades.
He was the former Vice Chancellor of the National Law School in Odisha, and this is a case of clear misinterpretation by students over the remarks by a senior most member of the faculty as he would have come across a variety of such instances in his career, and his intention, if proven, would have only been to maintain the decorum of the premier law school.”
Meanwhile, there were several students who took out their angst on the professor on social media. “A batch of 80+ students - whose grades and medals are very much dependent on this professor - is testifying to the allegations made in the statement.
I'd like to relate some anecdotes to you - the broader NLS community (current undergrads and alumni) who have been taught by this professor can also attest to his proclivity to make statements of this sort.
Nagaraj has in the past hauled up not only women for wearing shorts, but also men (and has made them sit on the floor as punishment, etc). He asked a woman batchmate of mine - outside class - whether her parents know what sort of activities she’s engaging in the college they pay for her to attend, because she was wearing shorts,” stated an NLSIU final year student in his post.
The students of NLSIU are now in a Catch-22 situation. They fear the Monday’s administrative meeting could result in a dress code. They are now more worried about it than the actions against the professor, some of students hinted.
“It has never been our intention to create a public spectacle by having the matter be reported and tried in the media. Even amongst us, we have varying understandings of the motivations of the professor himself. However, all of us stand united in our cause to condemn the inappropriate remarks made towards our batchmate, our demand for the independent inquiry into the incident and our continued freedom from an institution-imposed dress code,” stated a post on Facebook by Mamidipudi Mukunda.
“The Vice-Chancellor has taken cognisance of the matter, and it is our intention to press forward with our demand for an independent fact-finding committee to be set up to look into the incident. The professor has also made it clear to us that he is open to such an inquiry,” stated Mamidipudi Mukunda’s post....