The JNU Teachers' Association (JNUTA) on Monday extended support to the protesting students' union and demanded the varsity's vice-chancellor step down. Thousands of Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) students clashed with police on Monday as their protest over steep fee hike escalated, leaving HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal 'Nishank' stranded for over six hours at the venue of the varsity's convocation.
The students of the varsity, which has seen several such agitations in the recent years, were protesting outside the All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE) premises, the venue for the varsity's third convocation, which was addressed by Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu.
The JNUTA Teachers' held a meeting on the campus and unanimously adopted resolution "condemning the brutal police action against peacefully protesting JNU students which severely injured a large number of them".
The police has however denied taking any punitive action.
They teachers also demanded that the JNU Vice Chancellor "at whose behest this action was undertaken" step down from his position.
"The police action was clearly only to defend the obstinate refusal of the Vice Chancellor to engage in any dialogue with students on their concerns," they said.
The JNUTA was of the collective view that the changes in the hostel manual and the steep increase in hostel charges are unacceptable, they said.
"It is the University's responsibility to provide residential and mess facilities to students at reasonable cost and hostels cannot be run on a self-financing principle as the new Hostel Manual proposes," they said.
The students are demanding withdrawal of the draft hostel manual, in which service charges of Rs 1,700 were introduced and the one-time mess security fee, which is refundable, has been hiked from Rs 5,500 to Rs 12,000.
The rent for a single-seater room has been increased from Rs 20 per month to Rs 600 per month, while rent for a double-seater room has been increased from Rs 10 per month to Rs 300 per month.
The draft hostel manual also has provisions for dress code and curfew timings, the students' union alleged, even as the administration denied these two claims.