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IIT-Madras revokes ban on Ambedkar Periyar Students' Group

PTI 08 Jun 2015, 6:28:01 IST

Chennai: IIT Madras on Sunday reinstated recognition to Ambedkar Periyar Study Circle (APSC), a students group and appointed Professor Miland Brahme as its faculty advisor. The decision was taken after a meeting between the Dean of Students and representatives of APSC held on Sunday.

“The Dean of Students reinstated the recognition of APSC as an independent student body, and after consultation with the APSC representatives, recommended Professor Milind Brahme as the Faculty Advisor,” an official release from IIT-M said.

“Professor Brahme has consented to advise APSC as required in the guidelines for independent student bodies,” it said.

IIT-M found itself at the centre of a controversy after it recently derecognised APSC, many of whose members are Dalits, following a complaint that it was critical of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Union HRD Minster Smriti Irani also came under fire from political parties including Congress and students' bodies for the action against the APSC.

IIT-M had, however, maintained that “as per the guidelines in force, student bodies cannot use its name or its official entities in any capacity to publicise their activities or garner support without official permission.”

With students staging protests demanding withdrawal of the action, IIT-M had last week convened a meeting of the Board of Students. Noting that the Board of Students met and discussed the issues raised by APSC regarding modifications and suggestions for ensuring uniform guidelines for independent student bodies, the release said, some of the suggestions will be taken up in “due course”.

“Some of these will be implemented by the Office of Dean (Students), while the Student Affairs Council, Board of Students, and Senate will take up the modifications in due course for consideration as per established procedure,” it said.

The student body was banned by the Dean of Students, Sivakumar M Srinivasan, on May 24. The Dean of Students released a joint statement with APSC, stating that the matter has been closed.