CHITTAGONG, Nov 29: BCL feud centring dissolution of its unit committee and teachers' politics are among key factors behind the persisting student unrest on the Chittagong University (CU) campus.
The revelation came after a recent investigation by the Daily Observer.
According to insiders, Vice Chancellor Prof Anwarul Azim Arif and Pro-vice Chancellor Prof Iftekharuddin have been at loggerheads for long, which also contributed to the campus unrest.
Activists of the ruling Awami League's student wing have divided into several factions only for establishing their dominance on the campus, the investigation also unearthed.
Infuential leaders of Bangladesh Chhatra League often easily exercise more power on the varsity management to reap illegal benefit.
"These leaders' interference into CU affairs like admission and bidding goes on unabated," a CU official said, wishing not to be named.
Meanwhile, grievances persist among the BCL unit, as a new committee has not yet constituted although six months have already passed after dissolution of the unit body. The situation also encouraged the senior leaders to exhibit their influence on the campus, creating several factions within the party.
The leaders of those factions regularly maintain a liaison with the local leaders of Awami League. These BCL leaders are divided with City AL President ABM Mohiuddin Chowdhury and General Secretary AJM Nasiruddin.
"Local AL leaders also play a vital role in the CU politics," another official pointed out.
The CU authorities reopened Shah Amanat Hall on November 18. But a local leader allegedly occupied some seats for the former student activists of BCL which has infuriated a group of BCL activists.
Observers feel if differences of opinion among the local AL leaders are narrowed down, student unrest on the campus will remarkably be eased.
Another source points to the fact that some teachers politically influence BCL student factions on the campus, making the situation worse.
The conflict that persists between the VC and the Pro-VC since creation of the Pro-VC post is one of the prime reasons for the campus unrest.
The university rules and regulations are maintained as per the University Ordinance 1976. So, there was no post of Pro-VC at that time. As there was no specific job for the Pro-VC in the ordinance, the Pro-VC is dependent on the whims of the VC. If the VC assigns any job for the Pro-VC, then he can function.
Also, indifference of the local law enforcing agency to the CU problems could not improve the situation.
According to CU sources, around 200 cases against the unruly students remain pending with Hathazari Police Station. But not a single arrest has so far been made, CU authorities alleged.
When contacted, VC Prof Anwarul Azim Arif said, "The university goes by the Chittagong University Act of 1973. I am discharging my duties as per law and the Pro-VC is assisting me."
"There is no scope of conflict between us," he vehemently denied.
On campus unrest, Prof Arif said, "We have been trying to maintain a congenial atmosphere on the campus.'
He also claimed that everything was running on the campus smoothly.
Sirajuddowla, Proctor of Chittagong University, said, "We are trying hard to maintain a congenial academic atmosphere."
The Pro-VC, Prof Iftekharuddin, also denied any conflict with the VC.
He also said, 'The unrest on the campus is only due to factional clashes of the students.'
He further clarified that he was not involved with student issues.
When contacted, AKM Hafiz Akhtar, Police Super of Chittagong, said, "We are very much sincere to maintain law and order situation on the campus.'
Muhammad Ismail, Officer-in-Charge of Hathazari PS, said, "More than 200 policemen are deployed on the campus to maintain law and order."
On failure in arresting any of the accused, Ismail said, "In most of the cases, addresses of the accused are not properly directed. So, we could not identify the accused properly. As a result, most accused are absconding."
Meanwhile, tension gripped the campus as BCL factions are trying to gain control of Shah Amanat Hall and Suhrawardy Hall.