Students hold day-long protest at College of Agriculture; admn releases study tour money
Students in their second, third and fourth year of college started the protest in front of the college main building at 9 amUpdated: Jan 22, 2020 16:50 IST
After a day-long protest staged by at least 600 students of the College of Agriculture, Pune on the college premises against various issues, KP Viswanatha, vice-chancellor, Mahatma Phule Krishi Vidyapeeth (MPKV) has agreed to their demands that included issues related to academics, hostel facilities, college administration and sports.
Students in their second, third and fourth year of college started the protest in front of the college main building at 9 am. Caught unaware, the college administration requested the students to call off the protest and attend lectures, but failed to do so. It was only after KP Viswanatha, vice-chancellor, Mahatma Phule Krishi Vidyapeeth (MPKV), who came to the college from its head office in Rahuri, located 154 km from College of Agriculture, that the protests was called off at 6.30 pm.
The college administration released the study tour money to students, one of the issues raised by the latter, after the protest was called off.
Earlier, Aniket Kute, a fourth year student said, “Every time a student raised an issue, the professors would shut us down by threatening to fail us. So, we decided to boycott lectures and stage a protest. Our most important demand is that the administrative officials who harass students must be given a penalty. Our pending study tour money of Rs 1,250 per student must be given immediately. Students are yet to receive caution money and stipend.”
According to Shivani Bollewar, a third year student, professors often talk rudely to girls and their complaints are not registered. The girls are threatened by the administration who say that they will hold their degree certificate if they raise questions.
Shamal Bhagat, a student who was a part of the protest, said, “Earlier, the college library was open from 7 am to 11 pm, now it is operational from 9 am to 6pm, when we also have our lectures. It is shut on Sundays. The library should be kept open 24x7. Our college ground is usually rented out for private events and we cannot conduct our cultural programmes and sports-related activities. There is no grocery store within the campus and we have to go outside for our basic needs.”
Ashok Pharande, dean, Mahatma Phule Krishi Vidyapeeth said, “In our college, for 20 students we have one designated councillor. Most of the demands raised by the students can be solved by dialogue. We tried to talk to the students and explain to them that we have to abide by the state government norms to run a college. The students must justify their demands as we also have to keep an academic environment.”