Published: 23rd July 2022
Section 144-like situation on campus, say IIIT Basara students
Students had earlier intimated the University administration that they will intensify their protest if their demands are not met by July 24
While the students of Rajiv Gandhi University of Knowledge Technologies (RGUKT), also known as IIIT Basara, had earlier given the University administration a deadline of July 24 to fulfill their demands, the University has now declared a semester break for all the third-year engineering batch students.
Students alleged that this is a form of internal preparation to stop them from protesting. “They are also keeping us busy by setting up a packed academic calendar so that we can’t take part in any gathering or protest,” said Lavanya Gundeti, Vice-President of the Student Governing Council (SGC). It can be recalled that following prolonged protests by students in June against the University’s abysmal infrastructure and absence of a regular Vice-Chancellor, the government assured to resolve all the issues.
The students' council made a representation to the in-charge VC, listing out their demands on Sunday, July 17. In their letter, the students made it clear that they will intensify their stir if their demands are not met by July 24. The students' demands include the appointment of a regular VC, removal of the present mess contractor and issue of tenders to give a new catering contract to ensure good quality food is served in the mess and also to provide uniforms and laptops to the students.
However, the third-year engineering batch students were informed yesterday night to go on a semester break for nine days. “Although we have got the notice of the break, we haven’t got an order from the warden to leave the hostel yet,” said Harshavardhan Gurram, from the SGC. He described the current situation on the University campus as one that resembles a “Section 144-like scenario”. “I tried to enter the administrative block today and they stopped me,” he added.
Allegedly, new rules were issued yesterday wherein students have been barred from roaming outside their class and on campus, said Lavanya. “It is like Section 144 because no student is outside their room. We are only going out for lunch and dinner. The DSP has also warned us that if any student raises voice against faculty or security, then we will be picked up,” she added.
Despite the notice for a semester break, students are not willing to go back home. “I still have my projects to complete but we are also planning a protest for tomorrow,” said Lavanya.