GUWAHATI, Jan 17 - The research scholar fraternity of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Guwahati, today held a protest rally on their campus on the issue of fellowship hike for all research scholars in the country.
They demanded an 80 per cent hike in the research fellowship with a proper revision every four years. They also demanded that irrespective of the funding agencies, the fellowships should be disbursed to students in time.
“The Government of India had earlier stated that the fellowship would be increased periodically, in every four years. As per this assurance, it was supposed to be increased by April last year itself. Eight months have passed since then, but the research scholars are still waiting for the same,” a statement said.
The research scholars also criticised the government for arresting some research scholars in New Delhi, who were staging a silent protest with these demands yesterday.
“Yesterday, researchers from all parts of the nation had come to MHRD, New Delhi, to stage a silent protest. Yet, some protesters were arrested by the police. None of the protesters was vandalising any public property. Research is the foundation of growth in a developing country. The use of police force during the peaceful protest was a blot on the country,” the statement added.
The representatives at IIT Guwahati firmly stated that the agitation will continue till the hike in fellowship is confirmed by the Government of India. The protest rally and meeting are planned to be organised on a daily basis.
This, however, will have an impact on the normal running of classes in the institute. In addition, in the coming days, all laboratories will be kept closed and the teaching duty will also be boycotted if the government does not officially notify for the fellowship hike.