Hundreds of students of IIIT Basara in Nirmal district of Telangana staged a protest on Thursday, complaining about the poor quality of food and lack of basic amenities in the campus, prompting the governor and the state education minister to assure the students that their issues would be looked into.
Police were deployed at the university on Thursday as students blocked the main gate, demanding better facilities in the hostel mess, renovation of the hostel building, more faculty etc. Students, who also blocked the administration building, demanded that a permanent vice-chancellor be appointed and he stay inside the campus. At present, IAS officer Rahul Bojja, secretary and commissioner of SC Development, holds additional charge as vice-chancellor of the university.
State Education Minister P Sabita Reddy said that she has convened a meeting with university officials and has assured the students that all their issues would be addressed. “I have spoken with the officials regarding the students’ grievances. I asked them to resolve the issues as soon as possible,” she said.
A student leader alleged that the excessive police presence was to intimidate the students but added that they would not budge until their demands were met. “The food provided here is of very poor quality. We need more drinking water facilities. Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao can visit and see for himself,” the student, who did not wish to be named, said.
Apart from these demands, the students are also asking for laptops and computers for students who cannot afford to purchase them. The students sent messages to Governor Dr Tamilisai Soundararajan, who said Thursday that she will request the state government to look into their problems.
Meanwhile, Telangana BJP president Bandi Sanjay Kumar accused the government of trying to intimidate the protesting students. “The government is saying they are protesting for silly reasons. Asking for proper food and drinking water is silly? They are forcing the students to give up the protest or face expulsion,” he said, alleging that police locked the main gate to prevent the students from taking the protest outside the campus.