Nation Current Affairs 29 May 2017 Scholars won’t ...

Scholars won’t let Hyderabad University close

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | INDULEKHA ARAKKAL
Published May 29, 2017, 1:32 am IST
Updated May 29, 2017, 6:42 am IST
Varsity toys with idea of closing for summer vacation
University of Hyderabad
 University of Hyderabad

Hyderabad: Recent protests held at the University of Hyderabad by the student community has opened up the debate on whether students should be allowed to stay on campus or not during the summer vacation and whether it is feasible for the university to have a shut down for two months.

With research scholars opting to stay back, the hostels continue during the vacation. “As research scholars, we are supposed to do research for five years. We do not have a regular classes, so from what are we taking a break? My guide wouldn’t want me to take a break of more than two weeks. Our expenses are regulated by the administration. We also pay Rs 1000 for these two months as opposed to our hostel fees of Rs 500 for the whole semester,” said Sampurna Bhau-mik, an M.Phil student. 

 

Although the university tries to cut down on expenditure during the summer vacation, it becomes a hard task.

“We cannot ask PhD scholars to leave as they are expected to conduct research throughout their period of study, with no long breaks. When MA and integrated students with a defined academic programme that ends in May stay back, we have to think of cost cutting,” said Dr Vasuki Belavadi, chief warden. 

Students from the science discipline say their research cannot be stopped for long periods. “Some of my professors work with grasshoppers and their hatching is very seasonal. They wait throughout the year for these two months. Similarly, we have a lot of cell and animal cultures in the labs that need regular checks. It is not possible for lab technicians or  students to leave their projects for more than a week,” said Ms Ratna Nirupama, a student of cognitive science. 

 

The workers and staff are at the losing end as they do not get a summer vacation. 

“We have to work throughout the year. If not the hostel rooms, we will be called to sweep general areas. We have our weekly off during the vacation and any other leave comes under unpaid leave,” said E. Pramila, a sweeper for 12 years at the University.

As for contract workers, much of the staff is not eligible for vacations. Mr Paramesh Reddy, cook at the ladies hostel mess, said if he doesn’t have to cook he is assigned to tending the garden. “The university gives us a very short break during the summer, when other employees work. Then we are called back, creating a shift system.”

 

The shift system has been implemented to ensure that workers are not left without paid work for the two months of the vacation. A long-term vacation for the university would mean lack of maintenance. “There’s always lot to do. As electricians, we cannot demand more than a week off. In fact, we are short staffed. We have to regularly check open areas for lights, the generators need to be filled and loose wires cannot be left especially with monsoon coming up,” said chief electrician Syed Waliuddin.       

 

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Location: India, Telangana, Hyderabad




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