While M.Tech students at IIT Delhi have been protesting the fee hike for three days now, they have only received a response from the administration as President Droupadi Murmu is set to visit the institution on Saturday for the inauguration of a laboratory.
A student, while talking to Patriot, says, “The administration has asked for time till Monday. They don’t want any scene to be created while the President is here. We have been informed that the documentation process is going on which will conclude on Monday.”
Within a month of the Bombay IIT fee hike protest, a group of 150 students at IIT Delhi went on a protest against the administration on 31 August for raising the fees by 100%. The fees for M.Tech new entrants, after a 100% hike, was Rs 53,000 as compared to the earlier fee of Rs 26,450. Of this fee, the tuition fee alone saw an increase of around 150% – from Rs 10000 to Rs 25000. The fees for PhD new entrant students has also been increased by more than 60 %. Fees at several IITs and universities have substantially increased over the years.
Students have staged a protest to reject the fee hike and are now demanding a written clarification stating that fees will be reduced. The protest was not our go-to option, a student tells Patriot. “We’ve written hundreds of emails that went unnoticed, and now, when the president is visiting IIT Delhi for the inauguration of a lab, the administration has said that they’ll look into the matter, but no written clarification has been given as of yet”, the student said.
Students Patriot spoke to called the hikes “unbearable”. Another student, who requested anonymity, states that they have been told the rise is necessary because the location is expensive.
“The fees increase every year, but our stipend remains the same”, he says, “and that too isn’t something that is provided to us for free; we have to work for it. And if the fee is being raised because the location is becoming more expensive, the same applies to stipends.”
He points out that one of the main reasons parents prefer a government institution is the low costs. “But what’s the use if we have to pay so much? There are almost 500 to 600 students, and many of them are not from financially sound backgrounds. It’s not just the semester price; our tuition charge has also been raised by 150%, with no explanation”, he says.
While the issue has been put on the back burner for now, students are awaiting a response on Monday, which will decide the direction of the protests.