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Hunger Strike Against IIT Bombay Fee Hike Continues, No Relief for Students Yet

The hunger strike started on 6 August against a Rs 5,000 hike in the hostel fees.

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Education
2 min read
Hunger Strike Against IIT Bombay Fee Hike Continues, No Relief for Students Yet
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With the hunger strike against the fee hike in IIT Bombay entering its fifth day on Wednesday, 10 August, the institute is yet to concede to the students' demands.

The students' collective organising the demonstration, however, has said that it won't give up anytime soon.

"The day, which also marks August Kranti Divas began with the passing on of the baton with several students standing by in support and solidarity. Several members of the faculty have been visiting the protest site over the past week in support and solidarity," the collective called Students Against Fee Hike at IIT Bombay said in a statement.

Those protesting also organised lectures and film screenings to spread awareness about the privatisation of education.

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The hunger strike, which marks the second phase of the protest, started on 6 August against a Rs 5,000 hike in the hostel fees.

The institute had said that they needed to increase the amount from Rs 2,000 to Rs 7,000 to build more hostels and academic buildings due to a sharp increase in its strength.

The tuition fees for new PhD students, meanwhile, was hiked from Rs 2,500 to Rs 5,000. In the case of new MTech students, tuition fees rose from Rs 5,000 per semester (after a partial tuition fee waiver) to Rs 30,000 per semester.

What Has the College Said?

A day after the hunger strike started, the institute defended its decision saying that it needs to “adjust its charges to stay alive and grow,” reported NDTV.

"The majority of our students realise that the government cannot keep subsidising them beyond a point. IIT-Bombay is trying to convince the remaining few students to stop the stir by talking with them,” read a statement by the institute.

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'Public Education Institute Legitimising Privatisation'

The students, however, have responded to the institute's announcement by saying, “IIT Bombay is viewed as one of the most important public education institutions in India. It has a rich legacy of facilitating economic and social mobility for students coming from diverse backgrounds.”

"By making its students ‘understand’ that they cannot expect the government to bear even some burden of their educational expenses from public money, does the IIT Bombay administration wish to become one of the public education institutions attempting to legitimise privatisation of public education amongst its students?" they said.

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Edited By :Karan HM
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