IIT Bombay director’s statement on anti-reservation posts is ‘a lie’: APPSC

IIT Bombay director had said that the institute didn’t receive any complaint on anti-reservation posts by the head counselor of the Students Wellness Centre.

IIT Bombay director’s statement on anti-reservation posts is ‘a lie’: APPSC IIT Bombay (source: Official)
Vagisha Kaushik | Nov 9, 2022 - 4:17 p.m. IST
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NEW DELHI: The Ambedkar Periyar Phule Study Circle (APPSC) claimed that the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay director’s response is “a lie” and a “mockery of students’ welfare” where he said that the institute has not received any complaint on anti-reservation social media posts by the head counselor of Students Wellness Centre. The group condemned the “ignorance” of IIT Bombay administration towards issues faced by Scheduled Caste (SC), Scheduled Tribe (ST), and Other Backward Classes (OBC) students.

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The organisation referred to a report by Hindustan Times wherein it reported that the National Commission of Scheduled Tribes directed the secretary of the Ministry of Education to provide information about the action taken on issues such as lack of mental health support for SC, ST, OBC students in IITS, in fifteen days.

“We have not received any complaints from the students or any other body yet, hence we have not investigated. However, if something comes up from the National commission or any other higher authorities, we shall surely look into it,” IIT Bombay director was quoted as saying in response.

“The Director of IIT Bombay has openly lied that the institute did not receive any complaints regarding the anti reservation posts by the head counsellor of SWC, in a statement given to Hindustan Times. APPSC had raised this issue by mail on 10th June 2022,” the group said in a tweet.

In a statement, APPSC said, “The response given by the director is completely inaccurate and evasive as APPSC had raised this issue by an email with several authorities of the institute including the director, deputy directos, deans, and SC, ST cell on 10th June, 2022. It was only when no action was taken by the administration that we had to escalate the matter with the higher authorities and go to the National Commission. Despite the issue being brought to the notice of the director and the administration, no action was taken even after 5 months.”

Also Read | ‘Indian Institute of Upper Caste’: 9 IIMs violated PhD reservation norms, says IIT Bombay group

According to the group, Hima Anaredy, the head counselor of SWC passed casteist remarks about reservation and questioned the “merit” of students availing reservation for admission. APPSC claimed that she talked about ending reservations in a Facebook post.

Violation of reservation norms

The organization argued that this is not the first time that the IIT Bombay director and authorities have ignored the complaints raised by it. It recalled that when it raised the issue of violation of reservation norms in PhD admissions in IIT Bombay using the data collected from Right to Information (RTI), the institute completely ignored it.

Also Read | Extend 52% reservation for OBCs in admission, employment: AIOBCSA writes to PM Modi

APPSC blamed IIT Bombay for feigning ignorance whenever an issue is raised on social media and creating a narrative that had they known sooner, they’d have acted upon it. “The institute always tries to cover up the instances of caste discrimination being practised openly on campus,” it said.

APPSC complained that there is no caste sensitive counselor from SC or ST on campus, the gender cell doesn’t have adequate representation of SCs, STs and OBCs. It further said that despite raising the issue of lack of SC, ST faculty members, the institute has not hired from these communities even during the mission mode recruitment even after receiving several applications.

“Statement of the director is evasive and a lie and makes a mockery of the students’ welfare on campus,” APPSC, IIT Bombay stated.

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