Joint Students’ Action Committee (JSAC) against fee hike organized an open meeting, on the eve of April 19, 2017, regarding the ongoing struggle by students against the sky-rocketing hike in university fees. The meeting was organized in STUC lawn, wherein students from all over the university gathered in large numbers to discuss the further course of action.
The Joint Students’ Action Committee comprises of organizations such as Students for Society (SFS), Panjab University Student Union (PUSU), NSUI, Aaysha, PSU (LALKAAR) and SFI (Student’s Federation of India).
Amritpal from SFS briefed the crowd on how the protest started in university. He said, “Universities encounter admissions from all sections of society, some of whom can afford the fees and some cannot. Moreover, it is the responsibility of the government under right to education to provide appropriate means of education to all students.”
He further talked about the students of Panjab University been ‘fakely’ accused and sent behind the bars by the university administration. These were 53 in number. Commenting on the alleged use of violence by university authorities, he said, “This matter is not about violence, it is not about justice or injustice.”
After Amritpal’s address to the audience, the head of PSU (Lalkaar) Aman addressed the crowd. He motivated the students and claimed the university authorities want that the students lose their hopes. He said, “woh chahte hai ki humara hausla toot jaye par aisa nahi hoga.”
Ravinder from Student’s Federation of India (SFI) blamed the NDA government. According to him, after coming into power the NDA government introduced major fund cuts in the budget of National Human Resource Development (NHRD). “If they can spend crores on the promotion of yoga day, then why not for the education of students?”
Many students alleged that the VC was not responding to any overt discussion. They wanted to discuss the issue with the Vice-Chancellor face to face. However, that could not happen.
The students, nevertheless, have decided to carry on the protests with the following agendas in mind :-
–Total roll back of fee-hike.
–Quashing of false cases registered on students; many students who did not even have their names in the FIR were targeted.
–Against witch-hunting of students– the JSAC members are strongly against the witch-hunting of students done by the police.
–Ban police entry in university campus.
-Protests against detention of students on the basis of attendance.
-Against decrease in the number of seats in regular courses.
–Convert contractual workers into permanent ones.
-Complete student to teacher ratio.
A delegation of JSAC will meet the CM of Punjab to discuss this issue and raise the voice of the students for the same.
See what the Vice-Chancellor has to say over it here: https://www.facebook.com/pumirror1/videos/726089740896638/
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