University of Delhi: Students protest outside VC office, demand DU campus opening

Hundreds of students protested outside the office of the Vice Chancellor (VC) of Delhi University on Monday, demanding the immediate opening of the campus, days after the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) allowed the resumption of offline classes in the national capital. The students alleged that the Delhi police took them into custody and beat them up. However, police rejected their claims and said the protesters were released immediately after being removed from the site. The Students Federation of India, which organized the protest, claimed the activists leading the protest were “insulted” by security personnel stationed at the vice-chancellor’s office. The student organization claimed that three of their female employees were attacked by male Delhi Police officers.

Deputy Police Commissioner (North) Sagar Singh Kalsi rejected the claims in a statement that, at the request of DU authorities, some protesters were removed from outside the VC office and released immediately when the premises were vacated.

The protesting students put an ‘Out of Service’ sign on the door of the VC office. The Students’ Union of India (SFI), which organized the protest, said more than 400 students took part in the ‘Gherao’.

Ankit Birpali, secretary of SFI at Hindu College, said: “The displeasure of the students is evident. You can see it in their faces, hear it in their voices. The headmaster has to make a decision within two days, otherwise we will The SFI claimed that other student and teacher organizations had also expressed support for the protest, alleging that more than 53 departments of the university are boycotting online classes.Aarushi Sharma, a student of Miranda House, said: “Many of us are not yet in Delhi. That is why we were unable to attend the SFI protest. However, we have decided that we must take steps to send the message that most students support the demand to reopen the university campus. That’s why we boycotted online classes today.

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DU has not notified the resumption of offline classes on campus, despite the DDMA nodding to reopen higher education institutions from Monday. Officials have said the university will open in a few days and they will work out a strategy in this regard.

The SFI has announced that it will start the ‘Classroom on the Road’ campaign from 9 February until the opening of the university. Abhishek, SFI co-founder at DU, said: “A message is on its way to the classroom administration that both teachers and students want offline classes to resume. If they still have respect for us, they should open the premises immediately. At the reopening of the DU college, Vice Chancellor Yogesh Singh had said he would give the students a few days to return to campus.

Singh had said, “If DDMA allows 100 percent attendance, we will definitely reopen the campus.” But we give our students a few days to get back to campus, say ten days, since most of the students are from other states. We will formulate our own strategy.

Priyanshi Mayuri
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