THE explanation offered by a senior police officer in disallowing rally of leaders of progressive student alliance to protest Avijit murder in Rajshahi University is unacceptable. They were told that only Bangladesh Chattra League (BCL) is allowed to take out processions on campus to protest the killing of secular writer Avijit Roy.
All political activities on campus were outlawed by university authorities over a year ago. It appears that taking advantage of the ban all other student bodies except the BCL were not given a go-ahead. Obviously, the rules do not apply for the BCL. Are we also then to assume that the university authorities deem that BCL is the only legitimate student body and all others are not?
According to the disappointed left-wing student activists, student bodies other than BCL are never allowed to hold processions on any issue. This claim cannot be independently verified, but the attitude of the police officer in question is not only inexplicable but also unprofessional. Given that no student body except the BCL has been seen on campus of late lends credence to some of the claims of bias towards a particular student body. Holding processions is a democratic right. And unless these turn violent, no moral grounds can be shown to reject a rally. What we do not understand is why rules are applied selectively even in respect of a cause that stirred the conscience of the nation.