Hostelers give BU a headache

Hostelers give BU a headache

Hostelers give BU a headache

While the BU is thinking of handing over all its 11 hostels to the Department of Social Welfare, the issue reaffirms the varsity’s ‘helplessness’ in dealing with the matter with an iron fist.

The varsity may have had its way in evicting about 50 ‘students’ illegally staying in its Postgraduate (PG) 2 hostel on the Jnanabharathi Campus last September, yet its decree on denying accommodation to students who take up another PG programme is threatening to embarrass it again.

The vociferous protest of nearly 300 PG students in front of the Jnanajyothi Auditorium on the Central College campus on Friday amply illustrates this.

Terming the move to deny lodging facility to them as unfair and harsh, the protesting students sought its annulment. Besides, they demanded the removal of Chief Hostel Warden Raghunandana M who was proving to be a major obstacle in their scheme of things.

New students, however, oppose the idea.

“Two students can stay in each of the 180 rooms in the hostel. If old students are also accommodated, the hostel will get overcrowded,” a student of MCA 3rd semester said. Not just this, it would create a situation where seniors would rag the juniors and dictate terms to them, another student said.

According to him, senior students frequently take the juniors for a ride, cajole them to do ‘unacceptable’ things, and beat them up if they do not fall in line.

“Last Monday, I was beaten up by two seniors just because I questioned their repression and fought for evicting them from the hostel. Later, the matter reached the Jnanabharathi police,” he said. 

A senior professor who has supported the protesters said the university should consider providing accommodation to these students elsewhere.

“It’s quite weird that the varsity has refused accommodation to students after increasing the intake in various courses. Why did it increase the intake when it can’t provide hostel facility to students,” the professor said.

As an alternative, BU should accommodate the students in the nearly 10 teachers' quarters which are lying vacant. The new guesthouse could be also used for the purpose, he added.

Registrar (Administration) R M Ranganath, however, has refused to allow senior students in the hostel.

“It’s a policy decision. If we allow them, the hostel will become a hell for juniors and things will be back to square one. The matter now rests with the Vice-Chancellor who’ll take an appropriate decision,” Ranganath told Deccan Herald.

Meanwhile, BU’s attempts to outsource the maintenance of hostel to a professional agency have elicited poor response. Sources say BU cannot reimburse more than Rs 1,150 per student each month (Rs 720 is paid by the Department of Social Welfare).

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