Barishal University Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Imamul Haque has expressed grief for his recent “offensive comment”.
In a press statement signed by university public relations officer Faisal Ahmed on Friday, the VC said his recent remark was misunderstood by students.
“Unambiguously, I want to say that I didn't call the students 'razakarer bachcha'... I only said if anyone tries to foil any programme on Independence Day, he or she would be razakarer bachcha,” he said.
“Even then, I apologise if any of my students got hurt by the statement, and I seek cooperation from them in running the university's academic activities smoothly as before,” he said.
On Tuesday, students started demonstrations claiming that the VC arranged an Independence Day programme on campus without inviting students, and when they protested this action, he called them “razakarer bachcha” (children of Pak collaborators).
Later on Thursday, authorities shut down the university for an indefinite period amid protests.
According to the notice, the university would remain closed for an indefinite period from March 28 for the sake of security of its students, teachers, staff as well as the law-and-order situation in and around the campus. The students were also asked to vacate their residential halls and dormitories.
Though they left the campus, students intensified their protests, demanding the VC's resignation. On Friday evening, they brought out a torch procession from the university's Central Shaheed Minar and took position on Barishal-Patuakhali road in front the VC's residence for a while. Later, the agitating students burnt an effigy of the VC and chanted slogans demanding his resignation.