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Indian students protest over university row

Students demand resignation of Delhi University vice chancellor over controversial undergraduate programme.

Last updated: 26 Jun 2014 13:28
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Many believe that the four-year course has diluted the strengths of the university courses [File: Reuters]

Student groups in India have intensified their protest against the controversial Four-Year Undergraduate Programme (FYUP), demanding the resignation of Delhi University's vice-chancellor, Dinesh Singh.

Student bodies, Krantikari Yuva Sangathan (KYS) and All India Students Association (AISA), took to streets on Thursday over standoff between University Grants Commission (UGC) and the prestigious university located in the capital, New Delhi.

The UGC - a statutory body that provides funds as well as maintenance of standards in higher education - earlier this week issued notices to the university and the affiliated colleges to scrap the four-year undergraduate programme that was introduced last year.

The commission on June 20 also reportedly said that the four-year programme was against the National Education Policy (NEP), which envisages a 10+2+3 policy and had asked to restore the three-year programme.

However, the university insisted upon retaining the four-year course even after the UGC's directive against it.

"FYUP (Four-Year Undergraduate Programme) should be rolled back immediately because it is an anti-student reform. It is a question of future of 55,000 students. Because of this, students coming from other states are facing problems," said KYS protester, Satvik Mehrotra.

Members of the AISA converged at Central Secretariat area in New Delhi to peacefully protest but were detained by policemen. The students, however, said they had all requisite permissions and alleged manhandling by policemen.

"When there were around 40-50 of us, we were detained by the police, beaten and taken inside the van. We can't even protest peacefully in a democratic country like ours when the future of lakhs of students is at stake. Our demand from the president is that he should intervene in this matter immediately and force the vice chancellor to resign," said another protester, Ankit Shekhar.

 

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