JNU announces registration for next semester with hiked fees
Despite a human resource development (HRD) ministry panel recommending against alteration of fees in the middle of the academic session, Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) on Monday announced its decision to implement the revised hostel fee structure from the upcoming semester for which registration starts Wednesday.
The JNU Students’ Union (JNUSU) and Teachers Association (JNUTA) criticised the move with the former planning to boycott the registration process.
Since October 28, the university has been reeling under a students’ strike against a hike in the hostel fees. As a part of the protest, the students boycotted the semester exams and blocked the gates of schools and centres. Taking account of the blockade, the JNU administration had decided to take exams through emails or WhatsApp.
The administration had a meeting with JNUSU members on Monday morning to break the deadlock. However, Satish Yadav, general secretary of JNUSU, said, they could not reach to a consensus. “The administration was adamant on implementing the revised hostel fee from the upcoming semester and we were against it. It was decided that another meeting will be held to discuss the issue. However, the administration issued a notice in the evening, saying it will implement the new charges from the upcoming semester. They included an additional charge of Rs 500 per semester as medical fee.”
The rent for a single room will now be Rs 600 per month and Rs 300 per month for a double-sharing room. The charges are half for below poverty line (BPL) students. However, BPL students having Junior Research Fellowship (JRF) or equivalent will not get any concession.
JNU registrar Pramod Kumar said the administration had considered several recommendations given by the HRD panel and revoked the previously proposed monthly service charges of Rs 1,700. “The student union members had some unreasonable demands and we could not accept them. We already removed many components from the revised fee structure. The medical fee was included after due consideration,” he said.
Earlier in the day, Kumar issued a circular, saying students who could not complete their academic requirements of the ongoing semester due to the agitation will be registered provisionally in the next semester. All provisionally admitted students were asked to complete their pending academic activities by January 20, 2020. All faculty members were asked to complete evaluation process of the ongoing semester by then.
JNU vice-chancellor Jagadesh Kumar asked the students to call off their strike. “Keeping the future of students in mind, the university is giving yet another chance to students to complete their academic requirements for the monsoon semester, 2019.”
JNUSU president Aishe Ghosh said the union will meet to decide the future plan. “The way the administration has decided to implement the revised fee is totally not acceptable. We will continue our agitation against it,” she said.
The JNUTA also criticised the administration over January 20, 2020, deadline for completing academic requirements for the ongoing semester. “It has not been discussed with the faculty, which has to ultimately play an essential role in the completion of the requirements by the students. The administration must address the concerns of the students on hostel charges to end the cessation of academic activities. Unilateralism once again can hardly resolve a problem that was created in the first place,” the teachers’ body said.