Hundreds of agitated students of Delhi University’s Keshav Mahavidyalaya started a protest, demanding their right to hold a referendum to affiliate their college under the Delhi University Students’ Union (DUSU).
The protest has been ongoing for two weeks. It even led to a lockdown of the college gates on Thursday, 4th April, 2018. The students wished to get an appointment with the principal to talk over the matter.
A student mentioned that, “We started this movement in February and collected signatures of 813 students supporting the DUSU affiliation. But, the administration rejected it saying that they could be unauthentic. Then, we collected 516 id-cards from students to prove our point and wanted to meet the principal, to which she denied.”
Finally, the Principal, Madhu Pruthi, on meeting the students came to the conclusion that a referendum should be conducted for this purpose. The referendum was submitted by the students and was signed by the principal.
Pruthi issued a letter to Kunal Sehrawat, the DUSU Vice-President. This letter stated that, “On behalf of the college, I, Principal of the College state that our college shall try to get referendum for union from students before practical exams. However, if due to any unavoidable circumstances this may not happen, then the same shall be done positively before end of this academic session provided no indiscipline is observed in the campus by the students.”
Students observed this as their first step towards raising their voice at campus. Some students claimed that the police was called in by the administration to harass them when they were observing a sit-in outside the principal’s office.
A few college officials showed disapproval of the protest, stating that, “We have never denied to hold a student union election but there should not be indiscipline in the name of protests by students.” They added that the students were disturbing the peaceful atmosphere of the college, and were provoking hostility and unrest.