Jammu University professor calls Bhagat Singh a ‘terrorist’, apologises

Jammu: A senior professor of the Jammu University has stirred controversy by labeling freedom fighter Bhagat Singh as a “terrorist” during a lecture.

However, Mohammad Tajuddin, who is a senior professor in the political science department, claimed that the video being circulated on social media resulted in the misinterpretation of his comments.

“I also consider Bhagat Singh a revolutionary. He is one of the people who sacrificed their lives for the country.

I was teaching Lenin (Russian revolutionary) thought. In that, there was his brother who assassinated a Tsar and was charged with terrorism and he was hanged. To explain the concept better, there is a chapter on freedom struggle, where revolutionaries used to call the Britisher’s terrorists and they were also hanged. In that context, I said any state calls any violence against it as ‘terrorism’.

Someone took a 25-second video out of my two hours lecture. The terrorist word came in that, it wasn’t what I meant,” Professor Tajuddin told ANI while clarifying the comments he made.

The professor, however, apologized for hurting people’s sentiments. “A committee has been formed and it will be clear what had exactly happened,” Tajuddin added.

Meanwhile, students of the varsity are furious at the senior professor’s comments and have demanded his resignation.

Deepak Gupta, a political science student, condemned the professor’s remarks and said strict action should be taken against him.

“There was a lecture going on in the Department of Political Science and Professor Tajuddin was teaching. While comparing with Lenin’s brother, he said that Bhagat Singh was a hero, but was also a terrorist. It’s a wrong statement. He was a freedom fighter and sacrificed his life for the country at just 23 years. We demand the officials take strict action against the professor. The Vice-Chancellor has formed a committee. We are hopeful of a proper action being taken,” he noted.

Suresh Gupta, one of the complainants, also echoed similar sentiments. “Yesterday, at 1 o’clock, we were having lunch when a video became viral where Professor Tajuddin portrayed Bhagat Singh as a terrorist. How could he term him as a terrorist so easily?” he asked.

Gupta further alleged that this was not the first time that the senior professor had made such controversial comments.

“If you look at his past profile, this is not the first time. He referred Lord Ram as a cartoon character. We come here to study and gain knowledge. If such a professor makes such comments, this will affect the students. We strongly condemn this remark made by the professor,” the student said.

Suresh further said that a written complaint has been filed against the professor and a CD has been submitted to the Vice-Chancellor of the university, adding that Professor Tajuddin should be expelled as he was spoiling the varsity’s atmosphere.

Professor Manoj K Dhar, Vice-Chancellor, Jammu University, said that an inquiry committee has been formed and the varsity has disassociated Professor Tajuddin from teaching till the committee submits the report.

“Some students came to me last evening and told me about this incident. They submitted a CD as proof. I’ve immediately formed an inquiry committee. A six-member committee will look into the entire incident. Let’s wait for the outcome of the inquiry committee and based on that, we’ll take further action,” Dhar added.