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JUNE 25, 2003


On the 10th day of the dharna, 25th June, 2003, to save the Gandhian Institute of Studies from encroachment of unscrupulous elements working under direct patronage of Murali Manohar Joshi. The City Magistrate,Sarvagya Ram Mishra tried to provoke the protestors. He arrived on the dharna site around 7:30 pm along with the police officials C.O., Lal Bahadur  and S.O., Kapil Dev Mishra. Before coming there he spent quite some time at the residence of dismissed Professor of the Institute, Kusum Lata Kedia.

During this period some people went and broke open the lock put by the Board of Management of the Institute on Kusum Lata Kedia's old residence. On 21st June evening Kedia's friend Rameshwar Prasad Mishra 'Pankaj' tried to break open this lock and when the Acting Registrar of the Institute Muniza Khan tried to photograph him, he threw a brick at Muniza.

The City Magistrate asked Sandeep Pandey to provide him a list of people sitting on the dharna. Sandeep readily agreed to this but protested the breaking open of lock at Kedia's old residence during City Magistrate's presence on campus. The City Magistrate claimed that it was Kedia's
residence. Kedia and Pankaj have been illegally living together in the Director's residence since several months and a lock was put on her old residence after serving her legal notice to vacate the house by the Board of Management. When the City Magistrate was told that if Kedia could break open a lock to enter her old residence then the Board of Management was also
entitled to open its lock on the channel of the front gate of the Institute and enter its premises. He warned the protestors against opening this lock and threatened with dire consequences. He was told by Sandeep that his role was clearly partisan as he was allowing Kedia and friends to open locks according to their wish and preventing the Board from doing a similar act. 

He was also informed of the parting comment of the District Magistrate in a meeting of representatives of the Board of Management with him on 23rd June that no locks should be opened on campus. Because of his partisan role Sandeep declared that the protestors would refuse to cooperate with the City Magistrate and would definitely not provide him the list of volunteers sitting on dharna. The City Magistrate was agitated and ordered his police
officials to arrest the protestors if there was any disturbance from their side.

Just before he left he tried to arrest four of the protestors who standing by the side claiming that they were outsiders. Sandeep and others jumped in the middle and declared that he would have to arrest everybody if he wanted to arrest anybody at all. He dragged everybody to the outer main gate of the Institute and after some more heated exchange with the protestors decided to
leave them alone. He obviously did not have orders to arrest the protestors and was only trying his best to provoke them into doing something wrong which could become the basis for further punitive action on them. The protestors kept their cool and did not fall in the trap. The City Magistrate and police officials left around 8:15 pm.

Today's incident has shaken the confidence of the protestors in the City Magistrate, Varanasi and has clearly highlighted his partisan role in this matter. Letters of protest regarding the partisan role of City Magistrate and the police may be sent to D.M., Varanasi at Fax Number (0542) 2502754.






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