Thursday, April 18, 2024

Casteist performance at Jain University festival: FIR registered, students suspended

Jain Deemed to be University in Bengaluru has sparked outrage on social media after the students staged a casteist and insensitive skit at its college festival Samyog- Jain University Youth Fest, on 6 February.

The skit that made offensive remarks against Dr. B R Ambedkar and Dalits was directed and played by the students of the Center for Management Studies (CMS) in the institute. Following the outrage and condemnation from Dalit groups, six students from CMS were suspended.

The university authorities confirmed to Maktoob over phone that they have constituted a disciplinary committee per the UGC guidelines to probe the matter.

The Banglore City Police has registered an FIR under the IPC & The Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989, against the organizers and performers of the casteist skit.

“FIR (CR No 0032/2023) has been registered under the SC & ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989, at Siddapura PS. Further investigation is underway,” tweeted Bengaluru City Police.

Aakshay Bansode, youth leader of Vanchit Bahujan Aaghadi, also filed a police complaint seeking action against the students and the university before the superintendent of police, Nanded, Maharashtra.

The same script was enacted on 5 February by the same contingent at another college fest sponsored by Under25 in Bengaluru.

The now-suspended students who staged the skit, who identify themselves as The Delroys Boys, released a statement on social media in which they apologized for the skit but claimed the skit was aimed “to bring attention to the challenges faced by the marginalized communities, using humor as a tool to shed light on these hardships.”

“In light of the video emerging across social media and news platforms, students of Jain University Bangaluru, in their stage performance, commented disparaging remarks against the Father of the Indian Constitution, Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar, and the Scheduled Caste Community. These students, in their performance, not only tried to normalize caste discrimination but they went beyond and threatened the whole scheduled caste community through their skit,” Ambedkarite Students’ Association (ASA) TISS – Mumbai said in a statement.

“Such insensitive and casteist conduct from the students and the administration who allowed them to perform is a clear-cut case of institutional casteism and hatred against the Father of the Indian Constitution and his community. Such conduct is beyond tolerance at the educational institution, which is a bullying threat to the mental and emotional well-being of the marginalized community.” the ASA said.

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