Troop presence impedes education in Jaffna Campus
[TamilNet, Thursday, 02 March 2006, 02:11 GMT]
Jaffna University Student Union representatives and the University officials led by Vice Chancellor C. Mohanadas met at Jaffna University campus premises Wednesday 2 pm to explore possibilities of recommencing educational activities at Jaffna Campus, University officials said. Lectures and other campus activities were suspended from December 2005 due to escalating violence in Jaffna district and the presence of Sri Lanka troops in areas close to the University.
The president of Jaffna Campus Student Union, S. Kohularoopan, told TamilNet that presence of State armed forces near the University campus has created an atmosphere of fear among students and the prevailing situation is not conducive to higher learning.
Though the Student Union continues to demand the removal of the troops from the University area, the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) command in Jaffna district, despite giving several assurances, has not made any genuine effort to reduce the number of troops in locations near the Campus, student leader said.
He also told that outstation students face severe difficulties in finding places to stay and that the Student Union has warned the Campus authorities that unless the student accommodation issues are resolved, recommencing educational activities will not be possible.
Temporary measures to commence final lectures and examinations before the 10th of March for the final year students were also examined in the meeting, university sources said.
Lectures to final year students are to start on a trial basis and this will be extended to other faculties if normalcy prevails and majority of students attend the lectures, adminstrative officials of the Campus said.
The University authorities are expected to release a report Thursday morning regarding the steps they are taking, said university sources.