Jamia students on indefinite hunger strike
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Okhla Times Campus Reporter/JMI
MAY 7, 2011: Enraged and agitated some fifty students of central university Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI), who were debarred from appearing in exams on the ground of short attendance, start an indefinite hunger strike on the JMI campus at around 11 A.M on May 7. Out of these 17 students, 14 are from the famed M.A (Mass communication) post graduate course. These students claim that they have medical histories of diseases as old as 12 years and 6 years. But the course director Professor Obaid Siddiqui has rejected cases calling them fake, according to a protester.
MA Mass Communication final year student Nabila Zehra Zaidi told OKHLA TIMES: "The biggest injustice is that all these students have secured the minimum required attendance of 60 per cent and they are being refused the 15 per cent medical relaxation, this relief is a part of the ordinance of the university, furthermore majority of the cases are marginal requiring about 4-5 per cent relaxation. The director MCRC has maintained a fascist attitude towards the students and has denied them the relaxation that has already been availed by the rest of the university."
Another aggrieved student of M.A. Mass communication, who didn't want to be named, said: "Its been more than a month since we have been trying to convince the administration to look into our cases. But despite our best efforts we were driven to the court, Since we were without any resort. We will apply to higher courts but it is high time we spoke about it and stop bearing this silently. Hence, we planned this hunger strike and demonstration so the world knows that a dictatorship has been established in JM I and at the so called prestigious department of AJKMCRC."
Earlier they had even met the Vice-Chancellor Najeeb Jung to look into their case. But they got nothing out of that meeting. JMI media coordinator Simi Malhotra said: "As the Delhi High Court has already given a ruling against them we cannot do anything in this case. The HC decision is binding on the university and going against it would be contempt of court."
But the students are not convinced and have resorted to hunger strike. After failing to convince the JMI authorities, these students reached the Delhi High Court. Till now the Judge has dismissed all petitions on the basis of an earlier petition he had dismissed. Talking about the judgment, Nabila said: "Though the petition got dismissed but the Judge sympathized with the students and could see the "mess" created by the Department. Justice Kailash Gambhir has advised these students to plea in higher courts regarding the matter. Students have lost all hope and feel discriminated by the University as the University seems to holding some strict rules for some of its students and the same rules bent for some."
She further added that their Right to Education (RTE) is being violated on grounds of 'discrimination at all levels of the educational system'.
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