Ambedkar University Students Detained Outside Delhi CM Office; Faced Humiliation at Dy-CM’s Door

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Ambedkar University students sitting outside Delhi Chief Minister’s office in New Delhi

Being a state university, Ambedkar University Delhi (AUD) reserves 85% seats for students having the latest qualifications from Delhi or its domicile ,and the rest 15% for caste reservation.

Mohd Aasif | Clarion India

NEW DELHI — Students of the Ambedkar University Delhi (AUD), a state university, staged a protest against changes in the reservation policy for admission at Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia’s office on Wednesday.

But the protesters were manhandled and detained by the Delhi Police and detained at the Civil Lines police station. “The office staff of Manish Sisodia shouted and  brushed aside the arguments of the delegates despite the fact that they had arranged an appointment with the Deputy CM,” said Neha, a post-graduate student at the varsity and student activist of All India Students Association (AISA) who was one of the delegates.

The change in the reservation policy is the chief concern of the students. Being a state university, AUD reserves 85% seats for students having the latest qualification from Delhi or its domicile and the rest 15% for caste reservation.

“As per the new changes, the administration has made mandatory caste certificates issued by the Delhi government, which is impossible at such a short notice and this is injustice for students of other states. Earlier, certificates issued by other state governments were accepted, too”, Neha told Clarion India.

“Delhi State does not have its own list of ST people. As an outcome, there will be no admissions in this category”, pointed out Vijay Prakash, a PhD aspirant and postgraduate student of the varsity.

Student representatives have been demanding reduction in exorbitant fees — more than 25,000 per semester in various courses which is considered a high amount by some, especially during the special circumstances of coronavirus pandemic.

“The administration is running classes online and no other special activity is taking place due to lockdown. Many have taken bank loans to submit their fees. Hence, the university should slash down the amount of the fees”, said Soumya, a varsity student.

Full fee concession was granted to students that had reserved seats under SC, ST and PwD categories. This year, fee concession, which was earlier given based on caste certificates, is now granted on the basis of the annual income of the student’s family. This criterion was applicable for the students of general category, members of Progressive and Democratic Student Community (PDSC) and students of the varsity, Ishu Jaiswal told Clarion India.

“The University, after student protests, has stayed the new order and decided to continue with the old fee waiver scheme and have set up a review committee which will decide whether it remains after that or not”, said Jaiswal.

On Wednesday, a mass delegation of AUD students protested at the CM House against the high fees and the new reservation policy. Two representatives from the students, who were called inside, submitted their memorandum of demands at the CM House. Upon meeting the personal secretary of CM Arvind Kejriwal, the students requested for an appointment.

“The two delegation students were given an appointment at the Deputy CM and Education Minister Manish Sisodia’s house at Mathura Road with Dahiya. The students were assured that Dahiya would arrange a meeting with Sisodia,” said Neha.

Meanwhile, Dahiya, who met three student representatives at Mathura Road, refused to even listen to the students’ concerns.

“He misbehaved and shouted at the three women representatives. He dismissed the entire argument regarding the new reservation policy and asked students to leave his office and said that the issue was irrelevant and any remedy should be sought from the courts. He refused to listen to any concerns regarding the high fees and told students to submit their memorandum and leave”, Neha added.

While the students peacefully waited at the CMO for the delegates to return from the Deputy CM’s office, the police all of a sudden detained the students. Ishu Jaiswal told Clarion India that students were manhandled while being detained and then taken to the Civil Lines police station.

“The detained students were intimidated with an FIR under 188, 144 and the pandemic Act, and kept for four hours. The details of the students were taken down. However, no official action was taken”, he added.

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