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Info on students who skipped Thammasat graduation ceremony, presided over by King, reportedly with authorities

State authorities have reportedly collected information from Thammasat University on students who did not participate in the graduation ceremony on Saturday when the King handed out the certificates.

The ongoing political unrest coloured the atmosphere of the ceremony as several students refused to join it, but they are reportedly being monitored.

At Tha Phra Chan campus, security officers both in and out of uniforms surrounded the university to inspect people coming for the ceremony on Saturday.

Though strict security measures were in force, none of the bags was searched. According to iLaw, the only identification that was required was at the entry point, and people without a "red label" could not get in.

The screen showed that people who were allowed to enter the ceremony were people whose identifications were “not on the database”.

Thai PBS reported that the participants were sorted into six groups according to the colour of a sticker which the authorities placed on their body.

The measure was reportedly used to single out people who might showcase political messages during the ceremony. The university was accused of delivering the list of names of those students to the authorities. However, the university denied the allegation.

Students who did not join the rehearsal said their names were highlighted in “purple” with a message: “the name of a student who did not participate in the rehearsal is found in the database”.

Thai Academic Network for Civil Rights on Saturday demanded that Thammasat University clarify the allegation, as the decision not to participate in the ceremony was a student's right. However, there was no official response.

Published : November 01, 2020

By : The Nation