KASARGOD: The Occupy protests rocking three campuses of Central University of Kerala changed tactics after the administration suspended classes to blunt their strike demanding hostels for first-year students. Denied access to classroom, senior students began teaching juniors in all public spaces on three campuses of the university -- -- Periya, Padannakkad and Vidyanagar.
And this morning research scholars joined the strike after the university denied them access to labs. "Our ongoing experiments will go for a toss if lab access is denied," said a researcher.
The students had been occupying public spaces on the three campuses for the past two nights.
In a statement issued Wednesday night, registrar A Radhakrishnan Nair indefinitely suspended classes from Thursday. Security officials denied students access to classrooms this morning.
Students struck back by launching another protest. "Senior students have decided to teach the juniors in the available public spaces on campus. We will study and protest," said Visakh Viswabharan, leader of the Students Refugee Movement, which is leading the protest.
Condemning the university's decision to suspend classes, the movement said: "The university is trying to misrepresent our peaceful protest as extreme and violent."
The students said they would continue to occupy campuses at night. "We are trying to arrange classes ourselves by contacting faculty members and PhD scholars," the Occupy post said.
The protests were triggered after vice-chancellor G Gopa Kumar unilaterally increased student intake in the science departments from 20 to 30, and in the arts departments from 30 to 40, which made hostel rooms scarcer.