The Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) administration has warned that students who refuse to comply with the attendance diktat will not be allowed register for the next semester. In a circular dated February 08, 2018, the varsity said that apart from withdrawing the hostel and medical facilities, students who fail to follow the compulsory attendance order would lose their scholarship (including MCM, Non-NET, etc).
The JNU students union (JNUSU), terming the circular as a threatening move has called for complete university strike on Friday against the administration’s diktat. “The administration has broken all norms of decency by threatening to cut fellowships if students do not fulfill the draconian attendance criteria,” JNUSU said in a statement.
“The JNUSU warns the administration to not test the patience of the students and behave like a bully.”
The administration and students had been at loggerheads since the university last month reversed the age-old tradition of no attendance policy of JNU and imposed compulsory attendance system. Students and teachers in many centres of the varisity have refused to comply with the compulsory attendance system.
The teachers had said the university administration has arbitrarily imposed the attendance system with out any constructive debate in the academic council and the dissent notes by many members were expunged from the council meetings.
It is interesting to note that JNU, which is one of the top rated universities in the country had never had a system of compulsory attendance, and according to teachers, the education was based on the mutual trust between the faculty and students.
The JNU teachers associations (JNUTA) General Body opposing the attendance imposition said, “it strongly contests the presupposition that such a declaration makes, as there is no problem of mass or generalised absenteeism in classes.”
According to the JNUSU, the administration under the vice chancellor M. Jagadish Kumar is trying to destroy JNU by the seat cut in research, scrapping Deprivation Points, scrapping GSCASH and countless arbitrary measures.
The university administration had been in constant clash with the students and teacher since the present vice chancellor took office on January 27, 2016. He is accused of excesses and use of arbitrary powers to run the university.
Failing to make students comply with the attendance system and faced with resistance from teachers refusing to take attendance, the university is planning to impose biometric attendance system to bypass the boycott.