Published: 07th November 2019
Where is our VC? JNU students wait in the rain to find out, as protest continues
There were almost 200 students protesting near the Administration Block since afternoon, however the VC has not met them. Students say that he has not had a dialugue with them for years on end
After the Jawaharlal Nehru University administration issued an official notice, signed by the Acting Dean of Students Dr Vandana Mishra, on Wednesday stating that the protesting students coerced the Provosts to side with them, the students on Thursday began a sit-in protest at the Administration Block demanding a meeting with the Vice Chancellor. However, it was a failed attempt in the end - as the VC never showed up.
It's been ten days since the varsity students went on a strike demanding the revocation of the Draft Hostel Manual. "Even after so many days of protesting, we still haven't made any progress in terms of initiating a dialogue with the VC or the administration. They haven't responded to our demands at all. What can we do? We will continue our protests until something fruitful comes out of this. We are yet to decide on what we plan to do next," says Saket Moon, Vice President, JNU Students' Union.
There were almost 200 students protesting near the administration block since afternoon even when it was raining. Saket adds that the VC was not there on campus and the office closed at 5 pm.
All of this comes after the varsity administration put out the notice on Wednesday alleging that the protesting students made the Provosts sign on pre-drafted papers of resignation or rejection, owing to the draft hostel manual. The students had presented the Provosts and the wardens with a list of 12 concerns and objects they had regarding the draft manual earlier. The students had also issued an ultimatum, that expired at 12 pm on Monday, to the university administration to respond to their demands about various issues.
Earlier on Monday, CRPF jawans were spotted on campus near the Birsa Munda Marg. The former JNUSU president N Sai Balaji put out a tweet followed by several others asking why there were special forces on campus. In response to the students' ultimatum, the registrar, on Sunday night, had sent across a note of "caution" to students, warning them against protesting at the Administration Block as it had been prohibited by a Delhi High Court order. "Several pamphlets have come to the notice of the administration calling for Satyagraha and Marches and calling for students to assemble or pass through legally prohibited areas of the campus. This is to caution those who are planning to take part that this will be clear contempt of the decision of the Delhi High Court," read the Registrar's notice. He also added that "peaceful protests" could be conducted at the Sabarmati Lawn as per JNU's rules.
The administration could not be reached to comment on the issue.