November 11, 2020.
TED NewsDesk, New Delhi: Students from GB Pant Engineering College have been demonstrating against the non-exclusion of their institute in admission counselling procedures by IP College, including a 5-day hunger strike by some of them. They called off their protests on Tuesday, claiming that Lieutenant Governor of Delhi, Anil Baijal has reassured them that he shall intervene in the matter.
A joint statement issued by the students said that a three-member-delegation of student activists called on Lieutenant Governor Baijal “after hearing the grievances of the protesting students in a 20-minute-long meeting, promised to discuss the matter with the Delhi Chief Minister and give necessary directions to the Delhi Education Secretary to resolve the issue expeditiously,” as explained in a statement.
“The nine-day-sit-in outside Vikas Bhawan by students of GB Pant Engineering College against the non-inclusion of the educational institute in the counselling process for admission this year by the Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University has concluded today after the assurance of the Lieutenant Governor of Delhi,” said the statement.
In March 2019, the Delhi Cabinet had approved the construction of an integrated campus of the GB Pant Engineering College and Polytechnic at the Okhla Industrial Estate at an estimated cost of more than Rs 520 crore. However, there has been no official announcement or notice regarding the inclusion of the college in the counselling process for admissions, apart from the announcement of plans to make it part of the upcoming Delhi Skills University. As part of their requests, students also said that “after the meeting with the Lieutenant Governor and upon his request, the protest committee unanimously decided in favour of concluding the nine-day protest that had been running non-stop since November 2.”
The protesting students have also decided to continue maintaining vigilance to ensure their demands are fulfilled. The future course of action shall remain dependant on the implementation of the steps needed for safeguarding affordable higher education in the National Capital. One can only hope that the Lieutenant Governor and CM Kejriwal will bring some respite to the students striving to get access to affordable education and not have their finances hinder academic growth.