JNU students continue protest, talks on with administration

February 18th, 2009 - 5:11 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Feb 18 (IANS) Students of the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) here continued their strike for the third day Wednesday demanding withdrawal of the proposed fee hike and implementation of reservation policies in admissions.
However, negotiations between student leaders, JNU teachers and the administration were in progress and a resolution is expected by the evening.

The students continued with their sit-in protest in the L-block building on the third day and boycotted classes Wednesday.

“We are sitting at the administrative block since yesterday (Tuesday) and seeing our protest the administration has become a bit moderate,” a graduation student Mohammad Akhtar Raza told IANS.

Students started their protest Feb 3 but intensified it in the last two days by calling for a 48-hour strike Monday. A mass sit-in was planned from Tuesday night in which more than 2,000 students participated.

“The protest is against the university’s decision to install electricity meters in individual rooms and the proposed fee hike and problems regarding the implementation of reservation policies in admissions,” president of JNU Students Union (JNUSU) Sandeep Singh told IANS.

“It is also against the insensitivity of the administration towards ecology by renting out areas within the campus for commercial purposes,” he said.

“It is highly unprofessional of the administration and, if implemented, these proposals will definitely affect the educational environment of the university,” Ph.D student of sociology Anil Premala told IANS.

He said a resolution is expected by Wednesday evening and the meeting is underway.

Earlier, the Teachers Association of the University took a neutral stand on the issue and wrote a letter to the JNU vice-chancellor B.B. Bhattacharya demanding talks between the university authorities and students.

“We wrote a letter to the vice-chancellor for holding talks with the students. We have maintained a neutral view on the issue, but we support a dialogue between the students and the authorities. Since the dialogue is in progress, our view will emerge only after it,” professor at the School of International Studies Kamal Mitra Chenoy told IANS.

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