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Allahabad High Court

The Allahabad High Court today sought respose of the Vice-Chancellor of Aligarh Muslim University on a public interest litigation seeking direction to the varsity authorities to allow entry of women students into the Maulana Azad Library.

A division bench comprising Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud and Justice P K S Baghel issued notice to the VC on the PIL filed by law intern and activist Deeksha Dwivedi and sought a reply November 24.

The court “expressed displeasure” over undergraduate girls being denied access to the library and said it was the duty of the varsity administration to allow their entry and fix whatever problems come in the way of doing so, Dwivedi said.

In the PIL, it has been alleged that the AMU Vice- Chancellor Lt Gen Zameeruddin Shah was adopting a “discriminatory” attitude towards girl students by refusing to allow their entry into the library.

General Shah has, however, defended his stance saying while the restriction on undergraduate girls’ entry into the library has been in force for decades, the women students have been given the option of ordering books online.

The Vice-Chancellor has also stated in his defence that the distance between women’s college for undergraduates and the library was about three kilometres and the route was prone to incidents like eve-teasing and chain-snatching.

He has also cited lack of space in the library, describing it as “a crowded place” where “not even one more chair” could be brought in.

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