Deoband (Uttar Pradesh): Drawing flak for his alleged praise of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, Deoband Islamic seminary's vice chancellor Maulana
Mohammad Ghulam Vastanvi Wednesday said he has quit but not under
any pressure. He also alleged that it was a "conspiracy" against
"I have resigned from the post...I don't want there should be any
kind of problem or indiscipline (in the seminary) due to me," Vastanvi told reporters in Deoband, around 450 km from Lucknow.
"I have tendered the resignation not under any kind of pressure,"
added Vastanvi, who holds an MBA along with degrees in Islamic
Asked to comment on the protests he has been facing over his
reported remarks that were interpreted as endorsing Modi's rule in
Gujarat, Vastanvi replied, "I have already made my stand clear
over the issue...I was misquoted...I think that issue has nothing
to do with Darul Uloom. As of now, it all appears as a conspiracy
"I don't know who are behind the conspiracy, whose hands are
behind it...Therefore, I cannot say anything in this regard," he
According to a Darul Uloom source, Maulana Vastanvi's resignation
would be placed before the institution's governing council 'Majlis-e-Shoora'
Feb 15, and the final decision would be taken then.
Asked whether he would continue to head the institution if his
resignation is not accepted by the governing council, Vastanvi
said the decision would be taken later.
Vastanvi's resignation comes after recent demonstrations in the
Darul Uloom campus, where groups of students and the faculty
entered into a free-for-all. While a large chunk of students was
unrelenting on their demand for the ouster of the vice chancellor,
whom they were unwilling to pardon for allegedly praising Modi,
another group stood up in support of Vastanvi.
Claiming that the vice chancellor's remarks about the Gujarat
chief minister had been "distorted and twisted" by the media,
members of the pro-Vastanvi faction alleged the tirade against the
vice chancellor was motivated by certain vested interests.
The anti-Vastanvi group Jan 24 staged a sit-in demonstration
raising slogans of "Modi-Nawaz VC waapas jao" (Modi admiring VC go
back). They have resolved to continue their agitation until the
vice chancellor leaves the campus.