Three-day Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) Literary Festival 2022, which had commenced from 20 May, was abruptly cancelled by the university administration on the second day. However, hours later, students told The Quint that the administration has allowed to resume the event.
The Quint has reached out to the AMU administration for confirmation.
Earlier in the day, AMU students said on social media that they weren’t informed of the decision to cancel the event beforehand. They also said that they found the gates of Kennedy Auditorium locked.
A notice by Prof F S Sherani, who’s the Cultural Education Centre (CEC) coordinator, read, “Due to unavoidable circumstances the events of 21 and 22 May 2022 of AMU Lit Fest, is hereby postponed till further orders.”
But a member of the University Debating and Literary Club (UDLC), who wished to remain anonymous, said, "We do not have any clarity on why it has been cancelled. We are still trying to speak to the administration."
The administration cited a law and order issue for cancelling the event. But we were also told that there were some issues regarding the panels. If it was indeed a law and order issue, we can increase security and take the necessary steps, rather than canceling it abruptly. We are still speaking to the administration.A member of the UDLC
Sajid Bukhari, a final-year law student at AMU, who is also a member of the University Literary and Debating Society (ULDS), told The Quint, "The administration raised concerns of overcrowding in the auditorium but we are still trying to convince them to go back on their decision."
On the condition of anonymity, another student said, "The administration also raised concerns that some of the sessions might trigger a controversy."
Sessions to discuss minority rights and dissent, among other things, were going to be a part of the festival.
A talk by former Reserve Bank of India governor Raghuram Rajan on 'Why Liberal Democracy is Necessary for Indian Development' was scheduled at 6:30 pm on Saturday.
"The fest was being held in a hybrid mode. Certain sessions have been conducted online. The fest organisers may still go ahead with the session with Raghuram Rajan," Bukhari told The Quint.
'I Wonder Why': Social Media Reacts
Many people took to social media asking what led to the cancellation of the festival.