Chandigarh,15 May:While the entire faculty of the University today was busy in making departmental presentations before the Visiting Committee of UGC for the 11th Plan, students of the University hold the fort on the 39th day of the chain fast on the Campus demanding Central University Status for PU. Among the research scholars who sat on the fast, from the Guru Nanak Sikh Studies were Kamaljit Kaur and Maninder Kaur, and from the Department of Anthropology were Chakroverti Mahajan and Taranpreet Kaur. Sh. Sham Singh from the Centre for Adult and Continuing Education also joined the chain fast.
Sh. Chakroverti Mahajan, research scholar from the Department of Anthropology complained about the rising cost of higher education whereby more and more deserving students are being deprived of the opportunity to get higher education. Even the reputed University of the stature of Panjab University does feel the heat of sever financial crunch and is struggling to meet the bare needs. “In the face of global academic challenges, ongoing financial crisis of the University may prove fatal. That is precisely the reason that we are asking for the central university status for P.U.”, said Sh Chakroverti.
Kamaljit Kaur, research scholar from the department of Guru Nanak Singh studies, responding to the query that how research scholars are going to benefit if P.U. is made a central university, said that each and every Ph.D /M.Phil student on the campus will receive fellowship worth of Rs. 3-5 thousand per month which will give a big boost to research on the campus. Moreover Panjab University doesn’t have to increase other costs, such as admission and tuition fee, as part of resource mobilization strategy. Research Scholars can produce quality work only if they have easy access to wherewithal, including peaceful atmosphere in the hostels, said Taranpreet Kaur.
Similarly Centre for Adult and Continuing Education, meant to provide non-formal education to non-students, feels severely handicapped to work on desired goals for want of requisite infrastructure. ‘The recognition of P.U. as central university seems to be the only hope in the present scenario’, said Sh Sham Singh from the dharna site.