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Allahabad University Protest Not Carried by ‘Legitimate’ Students But Those With ‘Political Aspirations’: VC

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As the protest against the fee hike in Allahabad Universities intensifies, the vice-chancellor held a meeting with agitating students. The university claims that while it wanted to talk to ‘legitimate’ students, the names listed by protestors included names of former student union president Richa Singh, who is currently not a student of the university.

The meeting also included members of a high-level committee set-up by the vice-chancellor. The committee included teachers and district administrative officers. After waiting for two hours, the committee decided that they would be present in the North Hall on September 29 to resume talks, with the condition that it would include former members of the student union, suspended students, students of other colleges or alumni.

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“The university is ready to listen to the problems of its legitimate students. But it becomes clear from the list that the chaos in the campus is being spread only by some selfish elements due to their vested interests and political ambition,” said Allahabad University.

Students have been protesting against the fee hike for over a month. The fee per student annually for the past several decades was Rs 975 which comes to Rs 81 per month. The university fee has been increased to Rs 4,151 per year or Rs 333 per month. The students claimed the fee has been hiked 400-times.

Allahabad University Vice Chancellor Sangita Srivastava on Wednesday said their complaint was “misdirected” and promised to waive off the entire fee of those hailing from poor background and orphaned during Covid-19.

“What is being spread is that there is a 400-times increase which is not correct. The 30-40 students who have chosen to disrupt the campus by falsehood are trying to ruin the academic environment of Allahabad University. The complaint of the students is misdirected,” said the varsity. “Those who are so poor and are orphaned in Covid, I am giving my word, the university shall waive the entire fee for them,” it added.

A student protesting the fee hike had earlier attempted self-immolation on Monday but the act was foiled by the police deployed on the spot. Some protesting students claimed that the district administration is threatening to run bulldozer over their houses to end their agitation.

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