Research scholars of Assam University have gone on indefinite strike with effect from Tuesday evening in support of their various demands.
The research scholars continued their protest in front of the entrance gate of the university on Wednesday morning.
As students and faculty members started to reach the university campus, the protestors shouted slogans and intensified their protest which compelled the university authorities to call in additional para-military forces to keep the situation under control.
On Tuesday evening, the research scholars launched their indefinite strike by locking the administrative block of the university.
The list of their demands include release of the fellowship amounts for all scholars, which have been kept on hold since 2017.
Speaking to Northeast Now, former president of Assam University Students’ Union (AUSU) and currently the president of the Research Scholars’ Union of Assam University, Milan Das said, “The university authorities have not been able to give us a definite date as to when the money of the fellowships would be released. They have also failed to provide us a list of the scholars, whom they wish to give the fellowship amounts in due course of time. Even after submitting a memorandum to let us know the same on February 13, to the Vice Chancellor of Assam University, Dr Dilip Chandra Nath, no step has been taken so far.”
On Wednesday, at 8 in the morning, hordes of research scholars who camped the whole of previous night, outside the administrative block having it sealed, sat outside the entrance gates, bringing Assam University to a grinding halt.
Others too joined, especially, students of Bachelor of Pharmacy, who are yet to get a permanent building within the university campus.
The students of Bachelor of Vocational Studies, started in 2015, which the university authority plans to wind up, also joined the indefinite strike.
Not just about courses and fellowships, the agitators also vociferously shouted for better roads inside the university campus.
Talking to this correspondent, Milan Das said, “A sum of Rs 2.26 crore has been sanctioned for repairing the roads inside the campus, but nothing has been done so far. We won’t budge from our demands until and unless the university authorities give assurance to us in writing to fulfil all the demands that we have placed.”
Vice Chancelor Dr Dilip Chandra Nath is in Japan to attend a seminar and was not available for any comment regarding the fresh spate of protest and demands.
Registrar Dr Sanjiv Bhattacharjee was, however, seen scampering from Assam University Police Patrol post to acting VC Dr Ranju Rani Dhamala’s residence along with ADC Anisur Zaman Laskar to break the deadlock.
At the time of filing this report, Milan Das informed that a meeting of all heads of departments and the university officials has taken place to bring out an acceptable solution.