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Protesting students unnecessarily impatient: Delhi University V-C

Universities in the capital like Jawaharlal Nehru University and Ambedkar University Delhi have already announced 100% re-opening.

Written by Aranya Shankar | New Delhi |
Updated: February 9, 2022 7:10:16 am
Police pouring water on Kamal Tiwari, a CYSS activist and first-year student of MA in Buddhist Studies, after he doused himself with petrol. (Express photo by Abhinav Saha)

Delhi University Vice-Chancellor Yogesh Singh Tuesday said the university would reopen after taking stock of the level of preparedness. He said protesting students were becoming “unnecessarily impatient” and that such a big decision required many factors to be considered.

Sources said the issue may come up in the Academic Council meeting scheduled for Wednesday, even though it is not on the agenda.

The AC meeting is primarily being called to discuss the undergraduate curriculum framework.

Universities in the capital like Jawaharlal Nehru University and Ambedkar University Delhi have already announced 100% re-opening.

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However, DU is yet to take such a decision.

“We are working on the modalities and preparedness in the various colleges of the university. Once we get any clarity on that, we will open the university. We have to reopen, there is no question of not reopening,” Singh told The Indian Express.

Singh also said the comparison could not be made with JNU as the universities had completely different structures and number of students.

“See the size of the universities. Our challenges are very different. It is very easy to bring out a notice, it doesn’t take any time. But if there is no preparedness how will it work? Students have to come from different states. There are many issues associated with it. If we take an emotional decision and bring out a notice, what will happen to them? There are a good number of girls among them who have to come from far off places,” he said.

“We have to see the larger picture. We are working on it; as soon as we feel confident and comfortable we will open it. One of the main issues is hostel preparedness, but there is also sanitisation of classrooms. Furniture has to be cleaned, etc. We are going by whatever the principals are telling us,” he added.

Singh said students’ protests on re-opening could have been dealt with by issuing a notice to pacify them but that would not be correct.

“There is no question of not opening the university. The only thing is, students are unnecessarily becoming impatient. The Proctor told them we are opening the university, but they need to wait for it a little bit. We could have evaded responsibility by simply taking out a notice but that serves no purpose,” he said.

Earlier, DU Registrar had said meetings were on with principals to decide on when to re-open.

“We are trying to see when we can open but we will not do it immediately because we don’t want to panic students. We will give at least 7-10 days’ notice. It is not fair to compare JNU with DU, because JNU’s total student strength is around the strength of one DU college. We have around 65% students from outside. Where will they stay? We need to consider all these factors,” he had said.

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