IIT Kharagpur students end protest over hike in hostel fee
Kharagpur (West Bengal)[India], Dec. 21(ANI):Hostel residents of the Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur ended their protest after director of the institution assured that protesters demands would be looked into.
Earlier director, registrar and other college officials were gheraoed overnight in their offices by a group of students protesting against 20 percent hike in hostel fee.
While all the students were protesting since Monday afternoon in front of the director's office, eight of them decided to choose the tough way through and ended up sitting on a hunger strike.
The students have been protesting for over 24 hours at India's one of the elite institutions after they were informed of a 20 percent hike in the hostel fees even before the Good and Services Tax(GST) comes into place.
The authorities hiked the fee from Rs. 29000 to Rs. 37000 for their upcoming spring semester which starts from January.
"At the time of the admission, we were not informed of any hostel fees hike. This sudden hike comes in the middle of the semester. The PhD scholars receive a small sum as stipend. From the stipend, the scholar has to send some amount to home and rest is given as hostel fees and food expenses. Without any increase in the stipend, it is difficult for scholars to manage the hostel fees hike," said a student.
"We wanted a discussion with the management over this fee hike. Kharagpur is a cheap place, but the fees are the highest across all IITs. So what is the logic behind the hike?" said a protester.
The decision to hike fee was taken recently and, if enacted, would be effective from January.
The authorities have refused to speak to the media. However, sources in IIT Kharagpur said that no other IIT in the country has hiked its hostel fee.
In April this year, a large number of students at IIT Kharagpur had started a peaceful protest against the HRD ministry's decision to hike fees. (ANI)