Academics, Students Launch Nation-Wide Protests Against Saffronisation of Education, UGC 13-Point Roster
The protestors have called for a complete shutdown of colleges and universities on February 11.
Several groups of academics and students have launched multiple protests across the country against the higher education policies of the Modi government. The protestors’ demands include quality infrastructure, end of privatisation of education, autonomy, and restoration of the 200-point UGC roster system.
The Joint Forum for Academic and Social Justice (JFASJ) is protesting from February 4 to February 13 against the 13-point UGC roster. The protestors underlined that the new, department-wise roster system will destroy the reservation system.
On February 4, the forum members burnt effigies of Union HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar and UGC Chairperson Dhirendra Pal Singh in all the universities across the country. “We have executed the protest at an all India level. All the universities have participated in the protest. This is not just about SC, ST and OBCs, this is against natural justice, against democracy,” Dr Suchit Kumar, an assistant professor at the Hindu College, University of Delhi, told News Central24x7.
On Tuesday, the Delhi University Teachers’ Association (DUTA) organised a protest march from Mandi House to Parliament in Delhi. The march was supported by many including the JFASJ. The protestors are also organising public discussions in various universities located outside Delhi to create awareness regarding the roster issue.
On February 6, the forum will hold discussions on the status of SC, ST and OBCs in higher education in different parts of the country. On February 7, the research scholars, professors and academicians associated with the forum will participate in the Young India Adhikar March from Ramlila Maidan to Parliament in Delhi. Among other things, the march is being organised to protest saffronisation of education and gender discriminatory laws.
From February 8 to February 10, campaigns, seminars and talks on the status of SC, ST, OBCs in higher education institutions will be organised across the country by the student community in their respective universities and colleges. JFASJ has also called for a complete shutdown of colleges and universities on February 11.
On February 11, another march will be organised in Delhi — from UGC to MHRD — and protestors from different parts of the countries are expected to participate in the rally. The protest will conclude on February 13 with a review meeting where the strategy to build political pressure will be discussed, said a press release by JFASJ.