Published: 11th November 2019
JNU students retire after a day of intense protest against Nishank, VC. What will tomorrow bring?
The students hoped that the MHRD will help them resolve the issue swiftly and effectively
The students of Jawaharlal Nehru University said that the administration faces an "unprecedented crisis" as they left from in front of the AICTE at around 6pm after the day long protest against the university's hostel manual and fee hike. The VC, with whom the students have demanded to meet for the past two weeks, allegedly, left with the MHRD minister Ramesh Pokhriyal 'Nishank' after the minister told the students that he will look into the matter. Pokhriyal was at the AICTE auditorium for the convocation of the PhD students.
The students, throughout the day, were involved in spurts of clashes with the Delhi Police. When some of the students broke through the barricades and the protest intensified, the police lathicharged and deployed a water cannon. Many students were injured, some severely, said JNUSU Vice-President Saket Moon. "Even though I was not injured badly, a lot of our friends were severely injured when the police lathicharged and were taken to the Safdarjung Hospital. Some, who were relatively less critical, were treated at the campus medical facility," added Saket.
The students receiving their degrees were also part of the elaborate protest. They protested inside and the JNUSU said that it was not surprising to them that they joined in. "For a university where a majority of students come from the most marginalised backgrounds in this country, it no wonder that many of the degree receiving students participating in the convocation also joined the protest," the students' union clarified. They also added that it is the "strength and unity and purpose of our cause that has forced the MHRD to take note of our demands" and they hope that the minister would do what's required. "We hope that instead of dilly-dallying and protecting the anti-student measures of the JNU administration, better sense will prevail over the MHRD and all these policies will be rolled back. We seek an immediate resolution on the part of the MHRD and the JNU administration on this matter," said a statement released by the union.
Even though the students have moved on from the AICTE building they are in no way ready to let the protest die down or their demands ignored. "There was not point waiting there. The minister had left and the VC had fled with him. So we came back to campus but this does not mean that our strike is over or we are not protesting. We will protest this undemocratic and patriarchal draft hostel manual till we get justice," said Saket.