Many gold medalists of Pondicherry University have decided to boycott the annual convocation of the university as an expression of their opposition to the Citizenship (Amendment) Act and the National Register of Citizens. The university’s students council had, on Friday, urged students to boycott the annual event which is to be held on December 23 and will be attended by the President of India.
Speaking to TNM, one of the gold medalists of the university said that deciding to boycott the event was a personal decision. “It was my choice to boycott the convocation as a resistance towards the CAA and NRC,” the student said, requesting anonymity.
The students council of the university had, on Friday, requested students to boycott the event by refusing to get the degrees from the President of India, Ram Nath Kovind, who is going to attend the convocation. “The lives the state took from us, each life the first time it was lived and was ended so ruthlessly, and the violence it is trying to inflict on so many of us in Jamia, AMU, Mangalore, and the violence it is promising to inflict on us through CAA and NRC aren’t things that time will heal or will preserve for us to go back to later and figure them out. They are happening now, and either we act courageously, with integrity, in brotherhood, or we don’t,” read a statement released by the council. The statement also urged students to be present at the event but peacefully and constitutionally register their disappointment by not receiving the degrees from the President of India.
Parichay Yadav, the president of the students council, told TNM that their decision has been welcomed by the old students and current students equally. “We have around 190 gold medalists in the university and many of them have reached out to us expressing their solidarity with us. They have promised that they will not be registering for the event. We are expecting more people to come out in our support and against the CAA and NRC,” he said.
The university’s students council had organised a protest in support of the police violence on students of Jamia Millia Islamia University and Aligarh Muslim University last week, when they were protesting against the CAA and NRC.