Dhaka University (DU) students yesterday blocked the Shahbagh intersection for the second consecutive day to press home their four-point demand, including cancellation of seven colleges’ affiliation with the institution.
About 500 students blocked the intersection around noon, causing severe traffic congestion in the area and called off the demo at 2pm with an announcement to boycott all classes and examinations from Sunday until their demands are met.
DU students alleged that the university’s academic and administrative activities slowed down due to the affiliation with the seven colleges. “We will continue our demo until the university authorities formally take initiative to fulfill our demands,” said Shakil Bhuyan, a 4th year student of Management department.
Earlier, the two-hour-long protest in the intersection halted vehicular movement in adjacent streets, including New Market to Matsya Bhaban and Shahbagh to Farmgate -- causing miseries for commuters. Many were seen walking to their destinations.
“I’ve been waiting here [Matsya Bhaban] for over an hour and I have to go to BIRDEM. I have an appointment with a doctor,” said Anabil Saha, a resident of Demra. He was seen walking towards the hospital around 1:30pm.
Other demands of the students include publishing results within two months, digitising all administrative activities and controlling mass transport movement within campus.
Earlier, students gathered at the base of Raju memorial sculpture around 11am.
Talking to this newspaper, Akash Hossain Abid, a student of Management department, alleged that some students of the colleges affiliated with DU are often involved in various immoral and illegal activities, identifying themselves as “DU students”. “This practice tarnishes our image,” he added.
Contacted, DU Proctor AKM Golam Rabbani said the university authorities will try to resolve any academic crisis the students face but will not cancel the affiliation with seven colleges.
“Besides these seven, over 100 colleges or institutions are affiliated with this university and everything is in order. So, why blame only those seven?” he said.
He urged the students to discuss their problems with the authorities instead of announcing such programmes that cause public sufferings.
On Tuesday, students of the seven colleges barricaded the Nilkhet intersection to press home their four-point demand, including promotion of students who failed their honours first-year final exams.