Jawaharlal Nehru University, more commonly known as JNU, is a public university located in New Delhi, India. Although JNU was established in 1969, the University instantly got the recognition as one of the most progressive educational institutes in South Asia. Recently, it has been in the news for the protests which have been taking place against the hostel fee hike.
As per the new proposed fees, the hostel residing students will have to pay between Rs. 1800 and Rs. 3600 while they were previously paying just between Rs. 120 and 240. In addition to the accommodation fees, the students will also have to pay for sanitation and electricity now which did not happen before.
42% students studying in JNU belong to underprivileged families
According to a survey conducted with 463 students, 42% of students come from families whose annual income is less than Rs. 144000. According to Mr. Ali Javed who conducted this survey, many students studying at JNU stay hungry, walk miles, and work to support their families. JNU has been a place that provides quality education to all classes of the society and the current hike would influence the inclusivity that JNU has always promoted.
Actress Swara Bhasker who is also an alumnus from the same university had the same views.
JNU has always been known for its inclusivity and progressive views
The hike is many times more than the old fees and is reportedly unaffordable for most of the students studying there. JNU has always been known for its progressive and inclusive culture. According to the students, this move will affect the culture of the institute. Many alumni from JNU have made it to prestigious positions in journalism, government, and literature among others. Despite the private universities increasing with time, JNU has always strived for quality education for all at the much-subsidized rates.
The protests have been going on for four weeks
Hence, the students decided to launch a protest against this decision and have been registering their disapproval for the past four weeks. They also took to the streets of Delhi and headed to the Parliament to register their protest. The protestors were also joined by the common citizens.
Police interference worsened the matter
The protests took a serious turn when the protestors were allegedly baton-charged by the police for protesting and raising anti-government and anti-police slogans on Monday. While the police denied any such charges, the students stated that even the differently-abled ones were not spared. Shashubhushan Pandey, a visually impaired student, revealed that the police did not spare him even when he mentioned he was differently-abled.
A committee comprising senior members has been formed to resolve the issue
However, according to the administration, the fee hike was due for the last three decades and is not a recent decision. It was only declared now due to the rising inflation and recession. JNU has now constituted a committee to solve the grievances of the students by holding talks with the Jawaharlal Nehru University Student Union. The seven-member committee comprises of the senior professors from the University.