The Tata Institute of Social Sciences/Hyderabad has seen its students protesting over the last few days because the hostel and the mess fee of the institution have undergone a major hike. The structure of the fee has changed radically and the students feel that this is an unjust action by the university administration.
It was due to these sustained protests by the TISS students that the administration decided to take up a major move and decided to suspend all academic activities on its Hyderabad campus. The administration announced immediate ‘sine-die’ and said that it will continue to be practiced until new orders are issued. This would imply that it is not certain whether or not academic activities of the campus would be resumed soon. All the students had been told to vacate their hostel accommodation by Monday evening.
The action by the campus administration came about as a result of the sustained protests by the students at the campus over the sudden hike in fee of the hostel and mess facility available for them. They protested and also carried out a hunger strike wherein several students participated and raised alarm over the hike in fee structures. When the discussion between the administration and the students couldn’t reach an agreement, the Mumbai administration of TISS decided to suspend academic activities independently on the campus. It is said that classes and other academic initiatives will begin in the campus only once normalcy is restored.
The protesting students were demanding that the administration should take up the responsibility for students with the Government of India- Post Matric Scholarship (GoI PMS). The previous fee structure made it possible for students to pay their fees in instalments as they kept getting financial aid and scholarships.
The Students Action Committee is an informal collective of students who are protesting and it is now deliberating its further course of action.