Research scholars in Pune from National Chemical Laboratory (NCL), IISER Pune and Pune University have stood in support of the nationwide protests.
As the promise to announce the fellowship hike on 20th December was not fulfilled by the MHRD, nationwide protests were announced on 21st December 2018. In Pune, around 500 research scholars from the three premier institutes of India marched together from the NCL main gate to the main gate of Pune University and ended it by forming a human chain.
Again after a round of false promises made to the protesting scholars, scholars had decided to go on an indefinite hunger strike if no official announcements came out till 15th January 2019. This indeed happened! The research scholars were betrayed again and as decided, 16th January witnessed protests across the nation. Our fellow research scholars in Delhi had announced an indefinite hunger strike and were protesting silently outside MHRD, with all necessary permissions. We at Pune again marched in Pune University this time with more than 300 students. In the end a letter of demands was submitted to the Pro Vice Chancellor of the University.
In Pune, around 100 students gathered inside NCL on 18th January and shouted slogans. The director was forced to meet the students and a letter of demands and condemning the arrests was submitted to him asking him to send the letter to higher authorities. On 19th January, around 200 students gathered in IISER and carried out a candle march.
A clear message was sent to the authorities across India that their anti-democratic actions like arrests will not be put up with. And that more than scaring us these steps will be fought against with more force. The research scholars of the country stand united in the spirit “An Attack on one is an Attack on All!” The research scholars are determined that their just struggle is not going to end till their demands are fulfilled!!
Members of Lok Raj Sangathan have been very active in these struggles in Pune.