Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) has called a student’s protest as “criminal” and in “violation of the law”, as the students continued with their ‘Occupy Ad-Block’ agitation against the new admission policy.
Students have been sitting inside the administrative block since Thursday evening demanding that vice-chancellor M Jagadesh Kumar meet delegations from different schools over their concern regarding seat cuts due to the new policy.
“The agitating students have no basis for occupying the admin building, physically stopping the staff and officials from entering the administration building. This trespassing is criminal and violation of the law of the land,” read a statement by JNU.
Officials said they have not been able to enter the administration building since Thursday due to which official work has been hit. “Top officials have met the students but they are adamant on their demands. All official work is affected,” an official said.
The university recently adopted the May 5, 2016 UGC notification on admission policy that puts a cap on the number of students each faculty member can have under them as MPhil and PhD students.
Students said the new policy will drastically reduce the number of seats in research courses. “Students will continue with the protest at ad block until he answers our questions, reconvenes the 142nd AC meeting and revokes the decision of seat,” said Satarupa Chakraborty, general secretary, JNUSU.
The VC said only a small section of students are spreading rumors that there is going to be a seat cut in MPhil and PhD programmes. “In JNU, with a large number of (~300) new faculty recruitment process underway, M.Phil/PhD vacancies will increase,” he tweeted.
The VC office had said that he agreed to meet the JNU students’ union (JNUSU) representatives but they refused to take a letter communicating the same. However, JNUSU president Mohit Pandey said their demand is not being met with as the VC only agreed to meet union representative whereas delegation from each school wants to meet him.