Kolkata: Teachers and students committee of International Relations (IR), Jadavpur University conducted a meeting today and jointly decided that Professor Kanak Sarkar would be barred from teaching at the university from January 16 onwards. The meeting presided by the head of the department (International Relations), Prof Omprakash Mishra was conducted in the presence of other professors and students’ representatives.
Students revolt against Prof Sarkar
Sarkar has been vehemently criticized after his obnoxious Facebook post, in which he compared a woman’s virginity with that of a bottle’s seal, went viral. In the post, Sarkar had questioned people would purchase a bottle with a broken seal? The post had caused public outraged on social media.
In response to his post and public outrage, a two-hour meeting had been organized within the department. Students were seen protesting against the professor, making it very evident that they would be boycotting Sarkar’s classes.
Sarkar, the misogynist
Many of the protesting students even raised questions over his credibility as an accomplished teacher. “He keeps on staring at us if we wear a short dress or hot pants to his class. He even passes snide remarks. We feel utterly uncomfortable during his classes,” said Sohini Dutta of IR.
The girl students also complained about Sarkar’s lecherous behaviour. Most maintained that the professor would not just make snide remarks in the classroom but would also ask his female students to come over to his quarter if they needed score higher marks.
A habitual casteist too
The students accused Sarkar of not only being a misogynist but also a casteist, who would demoralize students who hailed from a vernacular background.
“During the admission process, he had a doubt regarding my capability as a student. He blatantly said I wouldn’t be able to study IR as I am not from an English medium background. I was so demoralised,” revealed Ekta Dutta, another student of IR.
Students and teachers approach VC
But it is not only students; teachers too have had to bear the brunt of his behaviour. “Sarkar has the habit of naming and shaming. He would discuss often discuss the personal lives of other teachers with the students. This not only unacceptable but also repulsive,” said Rachana Das, associate professor of IR.
Based on the outcome of the discussion, Prof Mishra submitted the decision of the teachers and students committee before Vice-Chancellor Professor Suranjan Das. The students too submitted their deputation at VC’s office.
Later, Sarkar has also been barred from entering university campus.
“We have got the recommendation submitted by teacher student committee of International Relations. He has been debarred from enter the university campus” said the VC.
Using Freedom of Speech to escape criticism
In the opinion of doing fair journalism, eNewsroom’s correspondent went to the Sarkar’s JU quarter, to seek his response to the criticism he has been receiving. On being questioned about his Facebook post, Sarkar expressed no remorse. On the contrary, he confidently defended himself by saying, “Freedom of speech and expression is for everyone. I had said what I felt.” Having said so, he closed the door on the face of the reporter, before she could ask any further questions.