Facing homelessness, DU students to protest with hunger

The University Community for Democracy will protest on the behalf of 1200 students who have been evicted from DU hostels for CWG guests


Jasleen Kaur | August 12, 2010

Members of University Community for Democracy sitting on hunger strike outside Arts Faculty in North Campus
Members of University Community for Democracy sitting on hunger strike outside Arts Faculty in North Campus

Students and teachers of the Delhi University are protesting against the eviction of students from the hostels in the wake of Commonwealth Games.  Members of the University Community for Democracy, a group of students, teachers and former students of the university, have started relay hunger strike from Thursday onwards. Each day there will be five people who will be on a hunger strike.

The forum, which started as an online discussions, was formed a month ago with an immediate concern for some 1200 students who have been evicted to accommodate guests during the games. It now demands that authorities should take the responsibility of the evicted students.

Bonojit Hussain, a former DU student and member of the forum says, "The university is being held hostage to the CWG. No college has done much for these students. The Daulat Ram is saying that they are providing accomodationg to students, but actually they have arbitarily selected 15-20 students and has asked them to stay in the seminar room. Is this the kind of alternatice accomodation you will provide to your students."

Students who have been evicted are facing lot of problem in finding accomodation as the rents in the neighbouring areas like Kamla Nagar, Roop Nagar, Shakti Nagar as rents have gone up to  three times. The forum has also written to National Commission for Women higlighting the problems faced by the female students in finding accomodation.

It is also against the violations of labour rights in the university. Prof Mukul Manglik, a lecturer with the Ramjas College is also part of the forum. He says, "The University reflects how democratic a society is. It should be setting standards but actually at all the construction sites in the campus, there is a complete violation of human rights."

He adds that because the games are so close most of the workers are working for 14 hours a day but are not being given extra money for that.
The forum plans to continue their protest and will ask the university to to regulate the rents till all the hostels are made.




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