Assam: NIT Silchar students call off hunger strike, as Director commits to removing Dean Academics Dr. BK Roy


In significant turns of events, the hunger strike that has engulfed the campus of National Institute of Technology (NIT Silchar), since Monday morning has been called off.

The decision to end the strike came after the director of the National Institute of Technology (NIT), Silchar professor Dilip Kumar Baidya has assured the protesting students that he will remove the current dean academics professor BK Roy in the next two days.

Students of the campus have been on an indefinite strike for the past five days over the alleged suicide of a third-year student.

Professor Baidya apologised to the students for being unable to reach out to them on time and assured them that Professor Roy will be removed from the post.

The students, however, wanted written assurance and they refused to call off the strike.

The body of the student was found at hostel-7 of the institute on September 15, police said.

“We are sympathetic towards the student who died, and we respect your agitation. We apologise to you for not being able to reach out on time. We are ready to fulfil all the demands in the next two days,” the director said.

“We are ready to fulfill their demands and we’ll come to meet them again if they call us. We feel that problem has almost been solved,” the director added.

The registrar of Silchar NIT, professor KL Baishnab on Thursday issued a notice appealing to the students to call off the hunger strike.

“We fervently appeal to the students to call off all sort of agitation and resume the classes as well as other academic activities so that the academic environment of the institute is maintained, and the authority is not constrained to close the institute for an indefinite period or to take any stern action. Let us try our best to restore normalcy in the campus,” he wrote.

However, during the meeting with the students on Friday, the director did not mention anything on shutting down the institute.

The students after the meeting said that at least eight of them were admitted to hospital during the five-day long hunger strike and they’ll continue the agitation until they get a written assurance.

“We are fighting for a cause, to bring back the proper environment of education and during the agitation, we are continuing our studies,” a student said.

Member of Parliament (MP) from Karimganj, Kripanath Mallah had on Wednesday writtten a letter to Union education minister Dharmendra Pradhan expressing his concern over the agitation and the unnatural death of the student.

Mallah appealed to the union minister to introduce “Free Entry-Exit” Policy of the National Education Policy (NEP) at central institutions like NIT, Silchar to ease the burden of students.

He has also demanded a high-level probe.

The Itanagar-based student union group Apatami Students’ Union in collaboration with others, are organising a candle march in Itanagar on Friday evening.

Koj Nichhi from Apatami Students’ Union on Thursday told HT that through this candle march, they are going to give a message to Arunachal Pradesh government and the union government that they want justice.

They have written letters to Arunachal Pradesh chief minister Pema Khandu and Union Home Minister Amit Shah about this incident.

“We have already written letters to the state and central government. We want the state government to form a committee to investigate the matter and send them to Silchar NIT,” Nichhi said.

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