The Jawaharlal Nehru University(JNU) is in a state of turmoil for the past few weeks. The unprecedented fee hike of various hostel services has led to students’ protest in Delhi. After students-police clashes, the JNU students union president met the HRD ministry officials on Wednesday morning and informed them about their demands.
The students demand a complete withdrawal of the draft hostel manual, in which service charges of ₹1,700 were introduced and a refundable one-time mess security fee, has been hiked from ₹5,500 to ₹12,000.
The rent for a single-sharing room has been increased from ₹20 per month to ₹600 per month, while the rent for a double-sharing room has been increased from ₹10 to ₹300 per month.
With the hike in fee and the introduction of new charges, several students on campus said that they might have to quit their studies.
The Logical Indian spoke to some students on how the hike could impact.
Nishant Kumar Dongre, MA, Sociology
Nishant, a first-Year student from a small town in Madhya Pradesh, was shocked after seeing the revised hostel fee structure. “My father is a tailor, and our monthly income hovers around ₹5,000 to ₹6,000. If the fee hike is implemented, then I have to pack my bags and leave the next day,” added Nishant.
Nishant said that a person with whom he has no blood relation has been helping him financially. “If the fee hike is implemented I won’t be able to ask him for money,” Nishant said.
Vivek Kumar, MA, German Studies
Vivek’s family’s monthly income is around ₹9,000 and if the fee hike is implemented then he won’t be able to study. Vivek’s father sells toiletry products such as mugs, naphthalene balls, door to door to earn his livelihood.
“Coming to JNU was the biggest challenge for me,” Vivek who is from Gaya, Bihar said. Vivek who dreamt of enrolling in IIT, could not join because of financial reasons. “After knowing high fees of IIT, I joined JNU to continue my studies,” said Vivek.
“I want to do my PhD, but don’t know if I will be able to do that,” he added.
Simran Kumari, BA, Spanish Studies
Simran hails from Banka district of Bihar. Her mother is an Anganwadi worker, and her father works at a shop. Her family’s annual income hovers around 1-1.5 lakh.
“Since my fee is less, my other two siblings are able to study in Delhi,” she said. Simran dreams of becoming a scholar, but she fears that her dreams will be crushed if the fee hike is implemented. “If the fee hike is implemented, then I will have to start applying for jobs rather than pursuing my dream of becoming a scholar,” she said.
When asked if she has informed her parents about the fee hike, her father said, “Apni ladai hain lado, but marpith se dur raho.” (Fight your battles but don’t resort to violence.)
Jyoti Kumari, M.A, Russian Studies
Jyoti’s father is a farmer. Her family struggles to meet the needs of the family. She did her schooling from Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya – a government-run free school.
Jyoti who hails from Sakhuan village in Bihar said that since the fee was less, she was able to get her education from the national capital. “From the next year onwards we will have to shell around ₹6,000 to ₹7,000 per month for a fee, which we cannot afford,” Jyoti concluded.