You are here: Home » PTI Stories » National » News
Business Standard

Fee hike: JNUTA demands complete roll-back; JNU admin cites Rs 45-cr deficit

Topics
Education

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

The JNU Teachers' Association (JNUTA) met the HRD Ministry-appointed high-powered panel on Thursday and demanded a complete roll- back of the hiked hostel fee, besides removal of the university's vice-chancellor, even as some teachers disassociated themselves from the group owing to their "indifference" towards the alleged attack on their colleagues by protesters.

The varsity issued a statement giving the rationale behind the hostel fee hike and said it has a deficit of Rs 45 crore, while alleging that a "misinformation" campaign was being run over the issue.

The Jawaharlal Nehru University administration has also issued a list of pending mess fees from hostel residents, amounting to over Rs 2.79 crore from July to October, which JNUSU vice-president Saket Moon termed "an attempt to threaten students".

Amid talks to resolve the impasse, members of RSS-affiliated Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) tried to march towards Shastri Bhawan, that houses the HRD Ministry, on Thursday demanding scrapping of the panel. However, they were stopped on Parliament Street by police and over 160 of them were detained.

The ABVP said Delhi University Students' Union president Akshit Dahiya and their state secretary Siddharth Yadav were also detained by police.

The three-member high-powered panel was constituted on Monday to recommend ways to restore normal functioning of the Jawaharlal Nehru University and mediate between the administration and students who have been protesting for over three weeks over the hostel fee hike.

In the over two-hour long meeting, the Jawaharlal Nehru University Teachers'' Association (JNUTA) Executive Committee told the panel that the "recurrent problems arising from the way JNU is being governed is impossible to address while the current vice-chancellor continues in office".

The panel will visit JNU campus on Friday to hold a second meeting with the students. The first meeting was held with JNU Students Union (JNUSU) office-bearers, student counsellors and hostel presidents on Wednesday at HRD Ministry.

However, a section of the university's teachers expressed unhappiness over the constitution of the high-powered panel and said it may complicate the current situation.

They also accused the JNUTA of "being hand in glove" with the protesters and alleged the agitating students had held a professor hostage for over 24 hours during the fee-hike protests.

Meanwhile, the students' agitation has got the support from Sanjaya Baru, the media advisor to former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

Former JNU Students' Union president N Sai Balaji shared a video in which Baru, a JNU alumnus, said, "At a time when almost every year we are spending almost six billion dollars on Indians studying abroad, it is extremely important to save public universities."

"Jawaharlal Nehru University is one of the best public universities according to the HRD ministry's ranking and it is important to ensure that good students can study at affordable costs," he said.

The agitation over hiked hostel fee escalated on November 11 when thousands of Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) students clashed with police, leaving HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal 'Nishank' stranded for over six hours at the venue of the university's convocation.

A week later, students staged a march from the university campus to HRD Ministry but were stopped at multiple locations and finally outside the Safdarjung tomb. The protesters alleged that the police had lathicharged and manhandled them, including a blind student, which led to a fresh protest by a group of visually challenged students.

The mother of missing JNU student, Najeeb Ahmed, visited the university on Thursday and met the visually challenged student, Shashi Bhushan Pandey at the campus and expressed solidarity with the cause of the protesting students.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Dear Reader,


Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.
We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor

First Published: Thu, November 21 2019. 23:45 IST
RECOMMENDED FOR YOU