Till last few days, Delhi University students were writing postcards to vice-chancellor Yogesh Tyagi to highlight the shortage of hostels and sky-rocketing prices of private accommodation, as part of Left-leaning students’ organisation All India Students’ Association’s (AISA) ‘A Room of My Own’ campaign. The postcards will be submitted on August 9, 2016. AISA wants DU to build new hostels to accommodate more students and is urging them to write postcards. But, when no initiative was taken, today the Delhi University’s students hold luggage march.
AISA has demanded that DU must “immediately start the construction of new hostels to ensure seats to all who need it,” and provide House Rent Allowance (HRA) to students living in rented accommodations till the time the hostels are constructed. They have also demanded that the government must implement Room Rent Control for private student accommodations.
Vishnu, a student of Kirori Mal College who joined the march, also had a similar story to narrate. “When people in other universities can get hostels, then why should we be deprived of them? I am staying with two other roommates in a one BHK flat, and yet my monthly costs cross Rs 10,000. How are students expected to pay so much?” he said.
There are students who have changed six accommodations in the last one year, because of the high rent. For the student studying in Rajdhani College (Raja Garden), is not staying near to the college because of the exorbitant prices. The students complain of travelling 45 minutes every day to college because at present their pocket allows to pay the rent for that locality only.
The luggage march was organised by the All India Students’ Association (AISA) on Saturday as part of their ‘A Room of My Own’ campaign. Carrying their luggage, beddings and utensils as a mark of protest, against the “skyrocketing rates of PGs and scarcity of hostels in DU”, the students marched through various student localities including Vijay Nagar, Gurmandi, Malkaganj and Kamla Nagar. DU currently offers 4,000 hostel seats for more than 80,000 undergraduate hostel aspirants.
Kawalpreet Kaur, AISA DU Vice President said, “We met several students who had earlier enrolled in outer campus colleges and due to lack of hostels had to live in expensive PGs. To cover their expenses they had to do part time jobs which forced them to fail and drop out of their courses.”