Three sophomores yesterday began the circulation of a petition calling for "an official referendum to determine the consensus of student opinion upon the issue of continuing Harvard's membership in the United States National Students Association."
The three, William M. Bennett '61, Laurence M. Johnson '61, and Robert K. Johnson '61, said jointly that they "are not taking sides on the withdrawal from N.S.A. We merely think there should be more discussion and a referendum."
Already, more than 200 signatures have been procured, with 1,000 necessary for a referendum. If a vote is held, its outcome must be binding on the Council.
Marc E. Leland '59, President of the Student Council, commented last night that "if 1,000 people really want a referendum, then by our constitution, we'll have one. We'll have as much debate as possible," he added.
Pro-N.S.A. Strategists Meet
Meanwhile, a meeting was held in the room of Derek T. Winans '60, Chairman of the Harvard Freedom Council, to discuss pro-N.S.A. strategy. Attending were Chitranjan Kapur '60, a Council member who voted against withdrawal, and Michael R. Lurie '60, President of the Harvard-Radcliffe Society for Minority Rights.
Winans said yesterday that he would present a written request to Leland this morning asking permission for him to address the Council tonight. He added that he would propose that the Council put up half of the funds necessary for membership with the proponents of the N.S.A. raising the remainder.
In reply to Winans, Leland countered that he would be welcome to speak at the "no agenda" Council meeting on Oct.13. He also said that he has "heard of nothing new that would give the matter relevance to bring it up this week."
Other developments yesterday included a request by Kapur that the Harvard Liberal Union join the pro-N.S.A. forces in their battle with the Council.
The possibility also arose that Winans would try to enlist enough Council support so that if he is denied permission to speak tonight, at least seven members will walk out of the meeting, leaving Leland without a quorum.