GhaziabadThe parents’ agitation turned ugly on Wednesday outside the district magistrate’s office as agitators blocked the main Ghaziabad-Hapur Road for nearly five hours, demanding a rollback of the ‘arbitrary’ fee hike in private schools. Protests were held despite the administration holding a meeting between parents and representatives from 13 schools at the district collectorate.Irate parents demanded that the DM direct the constitution of a fee committee in each school as is being done in Gautam Budh Nagar district. They were also adamant that DM Nidhi Kesarwani should come out and meet them on the road.Commuters faced a major inconvenience as vehicles were re-routed through by-lanes. By 4pm, the agitators moved in large numbers towards Hapur Chungi intersection and blocked the crossing for nearly an hour. Police were called in from Indirpuram, Sahibabad, Kavi Nagar, Sihani Gate, Kotwali and Women police station to manage the crowd.A few police officers suffered injuries after “some unruly elements who joined the protesters” allegedly turned violent. Ghaziabad SSP arrived at the scene and pacified the protesters.The protesters, mostly women, were taken to Harsaon police lines where the district magistrate, senior police officers and education department officials arrived for a joint meeting with parents.“We demand that the order of Gautam Budh Nagar district magistrate be rolled out in Ghaziabad as well. Some of the schools are still refusing to collect the old fee and are forcing students to purchase books from private publishers. Several schools with a single affiliation and several branches are harassing students for their parents joining the protest,” said Seema Tyagi, the woman who led the protest.Parents also named nearly a dozen schools that were collecting annual charges and a hiked fee. The DM directed the education department officials to take steps against these schools.“We will act against the schools named by parents. We have already identified a total of 28 schools against which the parents have complained. On Wednesday, we held meeting with 13 of these 28 schools. It is already decided that schools will not charge the annual fee till May 11, by when the district committee will look into complaints by parents,” said Kesarwani.“The purchase of books from private publishers will be optional for parents and so will that of uniforms, stationery, etc. The schools will adhere to CBSE guidelines and provide NCERT books to students,” she said.The police booked five protesters and 150 unidentified persons under IPC sections for rioting, causing hurt to public servant and assault at the Kavi Nagar police station. No arrest has been made till late evening.