After Srinagar, HRD Alerts All NITs
Directors asked to guard against flare up in campuses over idelogical differences
New Delhi: While its team is camping at NIT Srinagar to calm frayed tempers and keep a watch over the heavily-guarded campus, the Human Resources Development (HRD) ministry is also reaching out to all NIT Directors across the country to be alert to similar situations and react to them with sensitivity. The NIT Srinagar row has led to fears being expressed on either side of the divide with one group of students saying they may not be fairly treated by the institute’s faculty following these clashes and a larger fear being expressed that Kashmiri studentsacrossvariouscampusesin thecountrymaybetargetedinretaliation.
The situation at the NIT Srinagar campus has been tense after clashes erupted following India’s defeat to the West Indies in the World T20 Cup matchlastweek.Protestscontinueat thecampuswithsomestudentseven leaving and going home. Now, the HRD ministry is learnt to have informally advised almost all NIT Directors to guard against any similar situation and to handle it with ‘sensitivity’.
“Following the NIT Srinagar incident, it was felt that we must also ask the heads of these institutes to be aware of the situation on campus, be sensitive to it and counsel students and faculty as well”, a HRD ministry official confirmed to ET. The entire thrust of the HRD ministry effort so faristonormalizethesituationatthe campusthroughconfidencebuilding measures. The ministry is keeping a close watch on the situation at the NIT campus and is also counselling the faculty at the NIT to be extra cautious and sensitive to the situation, the ministry officials added.
TheNITSrinagarBoardwillalsobe meetingnextweektotakestockof the situation. Senior HRD ministry officials are expected to attend the meeting.ProtestscontinueattheNITwith students holding a dharna on the institute’s ground. Only 900 of the total 2300 students are said to be back to class. Besides clashes with the J&K police earlier this week that further aggravatedthesituation,thestudents andsomeparentshavealsoexpressed fears that the faculty may be biased against them in examinations.