Even after 24 hours the dust to the RSS supported FANS event on Muslim women empowerment held on Jamia campus on Tuesday is yet to subside with Jamia alumna and BJP leader Shazia Ilmi accusing her alma mater of putting “pressure” on organisers to drop her name from a panel of speakers.
The university has denied the charge vehemently. It is understood that her name was there on the banner doing the rounds on the campus for a seminar on triple talaq on February 16 which was postponed to February 28.
It is reported that she was invited by RSS supported Forum for Awareness of National Security (FANS) to speak at a seminar. According to Ilmi, the university had pressurised the organisers to change the subject to “Muslim’s women’s empowerment: Issues and challenges” and drop her name from the speaker’s list.
Jamia authorities rubbished the allegations.
“The event was not organised by the university or any of its department. The auditorium was rented out to the organisers and in such events the varsity has nothing to do with either the subject or choice of the speakers. It was not our prerogative,” a Jamia spokesperson said, denying allegations of pressurising the organizers, as reported by PTI.
However, programme convener Shailesh Vats, said: “We had finalised the speakers and the subject but then we were advised by the university to make some changes saying the atmosphere in the universities is not conducive to have such a discussion.”
Ilmi told PTI, “There was a lot of pressure on the organisers. First they changed the topic from triple talaq to women empowerment. Then they wanted me to be dropped from the speakers’ list. In the first initiation my name was there but in the second card my name was removed.”
“The organisers requested the authorities to allow them to invite me but they said no she will create a lot of problems. I also learnt that students were gathered outside the programme venue to stop me from speaking at the event,” she added.
The allegation has come at a time when debate of freedom of expression is being most-talked about in the country.
The forum, which has RSS ideologue Indresh Kumar as its patron, confirmed the sequence of events, reported PTI.