In a recent move, Aligarh Muslim University (AMU)'s teachers' association secretary, Mustafa Zaidi was suspended recently on October 26 on the charges of organising a dharna and indulging in disruptive activities on campus. Later on, he called a press conference and said that the authorities were attacking the very academic culture of the university.
As per media reports, AMU authorities on locked his chamber on Monday. Prior to his suspension, other staff members has also been suspended followed by their chambers been locked. Earlier, Hasan Mateenul Islam of the department of statistics and Nadeem Rezavi, a teacher who had called VC Lt general Zameer Uddin Shah "be aql" (foolish) on facebook found similar treatment meted out to them. Zaidi was heading a dharna on October 13, which held up banners about "irregularities in admission" and "flouting of rules in promotion and selection committees".
The group which was observing the dharna, also criticised a statement that the VC had made, about Muslims keeping their women enslaved. Zaidi was suspended by the university administration over the charges of 'gross misconduct' and 'for shirking his duty'.
AMU teachers' association has thrown its weight behind Zaidi and said that all democratic means of protest would be adopted seeking the revocation of the "illegal" suspension order served to Zaidi. According to AMU teachers, such embarrassment to members of the staff is happening on a regular basis under the regime of VC Shah. They contend that these are means of curtailing dissent, peacefully and democratically expressed.
Zaidi said that far from shirking his responsibilities as a teacher, he was only involved in a democratic and peaceful protest.