NEW DELHI: When protests by students across the country were turning violent, especially at Jamia Millia Islamia, students of the Indian Institute of Mass Communication (IIMC) in Delhi on Tuesday set an example with their peaceful protest as they marked the fourteenth day of the stir against the administration over tution and hostel fees hike.
The students appeared for their semester exams, which started on Monday and then joined the ongoing strike on Tuesday, without boycotting or impeding academic activities. The peaceful protest turned into an indefinite hunger strike on Monday.
Devesh, a Hindi journalism student, told IANS that students have decided to keep the protest peaceful no matter what.
"We decided to keep the protest peaceful since the beginning. We never wanted to disturb the academics for any reason. We never requested any student to boycott exams or any academic activity. We are not even sloganeering because that may distract classes here. We in fact asked students to go and attend their classes for attendance sake because rules for attendance are quite stringent here," said Devesh.
"We are also doing it peacefully because the administration is constantly in touch with us and is talking to us about the issue; however a solution has not been provided," he added.
Talking about the Jamia protest that turned violent on Sunday, he said that "however it is subject to the investigation but if the violence was done by students then it is wrong. However, police have no right to unleash brutality on students."
Another student Surbhi, from the English journalism course, said that she supported the students' protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act because she found it divisive and against the soul of the Indian Constitution "but resorting to violence cannot be the answer".
Talking about the students' demand she told IANS, "Fees here are skyrocketing. Students from SC, ST, OBC and other tribal communities cannot afford to study in this institute. It is a public funded institute and making it available just for the rich section of society is unacceptable. That's why we are striking and requesting the administration to roll back the fee hike."