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Bihar law college puts its original Urdu signboard back after students and activists protest

Bihar law college puts its original Urdu signboard back after students and activists protest
The original signboard

After a Twitter storm and outcry by students from all over the country, the CM Law College, Bihar replaced its original Urdu signboard two days after it removed it. The protestors tell us that the signboard was replaced on Saturday evening.

"The principal of the college had sent me photographs of the college's entrance on Saturday with a new Urdu signboard," says former AMUSU President Maskoor Ahmad Usmani. Maskoor was among the activists who led the protest. "We only wanted the administration to give Urdu the prominence that it gives any other language. The problem arises when one tries to associate a language with religion. Not all Urdu speakers are Muslim," he says. According to the 2011 Government of India census, there are more than 62 million Urdu speakers in the country. It is also the seventh most commonly spoken language in the country.

We also reached out to the college's principal Dr Badre Alam to know more about the incident. He says, "Certain student groups had an issue over the signboard's colour and then the language Urdu. This led to us removing the board. He adds, "But we chose to replace it after students raised their voice."

The protestors and students had previously accused the administration of succumbing to the pressure by the RSS-affiliated Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad for removing the board. The ABVP, on the other hand had accepted that they demanded the signboard's removal. "We have been asking the college administration to do this for quite some time. Let them have a signboard in English or Hindi, but what is the whole point of having one in Urdu?" Laxmi Kumari, ABVP Bihar State Secretary asked then. "The principal of the college was quite welcoming to our demands, despite being a Muslim," she had told us.

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