Contrary to students’ claims, JNU teachers say proposal for yoga, culture courses not rejected


The Jawaharlal Nehru University Teachers’ Association (JNUTA) on Friday said the varsity has not rejected the proposal to introduce certificate courses in yoga and Indian culture and was deliberating it even as the students union claimed otherwise.

JNU Students’ Union maintained that the Academic Council, which is the varsity’s statutory decision-making body, has rejected the proposal to introduce these courses “with majority”.

“At a recently convened meeting of the Academic Council, certificate course in computational linguistics was approved and two other courses — yoga philosophy and Indian culture — received wonderful suggestions. It was decided that the centre concerned might improve the courses in the light of suggestions made and then come back to the Council. At no stage the proposal was rejected outright,” a statement issued by JNUTA said.

However, JNUSU in a statement said, “While the students continued to protest outside the AC meeting venue, the proposal to introduce short-term courses in yoga and Indian culture was rejected with majority.”

When contacted, the university administration did not comment on the “actual status” of the courses.

The proposal to introduce three short-term courses in these subjects had come last year against the backdrop of right-wing organisations, including RSS, insisting on propagation of culture in educational campuses to promote India’s rich heritage and restore its cultural identity.

Following various communications from the HRD Ministry and the University Grants Commission (UGC), JNU had last year circulated a draft of three courses among its various schools and departments for their feedback. The proposal was rejected by the Academic Council in November.

However, the varsity had in May decided to reconsider it and the departments were asked to rework on the proposed course structure and place the same before the council.

The matter was placed before the AC which was held last week amid protests by a section of students.

(With inputs from PTI)