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Relay protests to dodge SC stick

Anti-reservation activists have a contingency plan to keep their agitation going.

india Updated: May 31, 2006 02:58 IST

Anti-reservation activists have a contingency plan to keep their agitation going after the Supreme Court warning. Students from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) and Delhi University (DU) would replace the medicos, if they back out under pressure from the Supreme Court.

Attempting to shift focus from AIIMS, the nerve centre of the agitation so far, around 50 students put up a tent in front of the main IIT building on Tuesday. Four took up a relay hunger strike while two, a fourth and first year student, began an “indefinite” hunger strike. “We have received calls from medicos asking us to keep the protests, dharnas going if they pull out of the anti-quota stir,” said Mukund, an IITian.

Most of the protesters on Tuesday were Masters, Phd and fourth year students. The IITians also expect students from various technical, engineering colleges across the capital to join them. “On the first day itself, we had people from IIT Madras, Kharagpur and Roorke joining us,” said Kapil Kumar Aggarwal, an Msc (Physics) student.

“In coming days, we hope to project the anti-quota stir as a wider phenomenon and not just restricted to medicos,” said fourth year IITian Avkash Gupta, one of the two IIT students on the indefinite hunger strike.

But the students may not be able to make the IIT-Delhi campus a wider platform. A senior professor said: “We don’t approve of such means but if the IITians want to sit here, it’s fine by us. However, attempts to bring in students and protestors from other colleges to the campus would not be allowed.”

First Published: May 31, 2006 02:20 IST