JNUSU reiterates demands, digs its heels in on boycotting exams that start tomorrowUpdated: Dec 10, 2019 23:49 IST
The Jawaharlal Nehru University Students’ Union (JNUSU), on Tuesday, reiterated its demands of a complete rollback of services dues and refused to budge even as officials from the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) held a meeting with them to negotiate on the JNU stalemate. The students’ union have also demanded postponement of end of semester examination, scheduled to begin December 12. According to a source, while postponement of the examinations appeared likely, it is the quantum of the rollback of fees and dues that will be finalised before a solution is arrived at. A fresh meeting is expected on December 11.
“We have made it clear that we will not call off the strike until there is a complete rollback of the fee hike. During the meeting, we told them that we will not appear for the semester-end examination on December 12 and we need a buffer time to appear for our examinations,” JNUSU general secretary Satish Chandra Yadav said.
A senior HRD ministry official, however, said that discussions were still on and a final decision was yet to be taken.
“The students are welcome to express their grievances. However, a balanced decision has to be arrived at. It will require consultation with the varsity administration as well. The ministry is very keen that all genuine demands are met and situation returns to normal at the earliest,” a senior ministry official said, adding that the details of a solution were being thrashed out.
Tuesday’s meeting took place between JNUSU office-bearers, education secretary R Subrahmanyam and joint secretary Girish Hosur. MHRD officials have called JNUSU members for another meeting on Wednesday after talks with university administration, which has been asking students to call off their strike and appear for the examination.
“The call given for boycotting the semester-end examination is clearly against the academic careers of thousands of fellow students. The administration once again appeals to the agitators to call off their agitation immediately so that normalcy returns to the campus,” JNU registrar Pramod Kumar said.
The administration has also reiterated that despite the agitation the examinations would be conducted as per scheduled and police force could be used, if needed.
For 44 days, JNU students have boycotted all academic activities over a substantial hostel fee hike proposed in the new manual. They also contend that the new manual was not made in consultation with the students’ representatives and demanded inclusion of all stakeholders in the decision-making process. Officials in the MHRD have recommended a dialogue between all stakeholders to ensure the standoff is resolved.
On Monday, hundreds of students descended on Delhi’s streets to march to the Rashtrapati Bhavan and place their demands in front of the President, who is also the Visitor of the university. However, the protest march was cut short after students were lathicharged as they attempted to take the Ring Road for the march leading to traffic snarls.