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AISA campaign for students’ hostels strikes a chord in DU

AISA campaign for students’ hostels strikes a chord in DU

Abhinav Singh |

The All India Students’ Association (AISA) has been vigorously mobilising support for its unique "A Room of My Own: Campaign for Right to Accommodation" over the last two weeks, reaching out to a large number of students, including freshers.

AISA’s volunteers have been meeting students in colleges in both north and south campus of Delhi University and in nearby localities.

The AISA campaign has struck a chord among the thousands of students who are forced to stay in costly rented accommodation in "miserable and pathetic circumstances" due to lack of hostels. Though several student wings have raised the issue from time to time, AISA’s campaign is unique because it ensures maximum participation of students. AISA is also using social media going to Facebook, Whatsaap and Twitter to ensure maximum student participation.

AISA’s major demand is that DU and its colleges must immediately start constructing new hostels to ensure seats for all who need it. They feel till that is done, DU must provide allowance (HRA) to students living in rented accommodation. AISA is also demanding that the government apply room rent control for private student accommodation. POST-CARD INITIATIVE The campaign includes distributing post cards addressed to the Vice-Chancellor to students who in turn pen down their remarks. "Opinions of more than 10,000 DU students on the postcards have been recorded.

There has been tremendous response to the campaign which has highlighted the plight of common students," said Aman Nawaz, secretary of AISA at DU. The students have mentioned the hardships they have to face while staying in rented accommodation on the postcards addressed to the VC.

"The plight of students staying outside is numerous.The landlords only want to extract maximum money out of our pockets in lieu of one thing or other apart from the exorbitant room rent," said a student from the North East.

A girl student said their relationship with landlords is nothing sort of a ‘parasitic relationship’, "We are the host and they are parasites. They have no regard or respect for us and treat us as if we are some second grade citizens," she said.

AISA plans to assemble at Arts Faculty tomorrow and march to the Vice Chancellor’s office to submit the post cards addressed to him. LUGGAGE MARCH AISA also organised a ‘luggage march’ in student localities at both north and south campuses. A large number of students joined in.

"Basically it is to draw the attention of authorities and those concerned towards the plight of students staying in rented accommodation. It is to sensitise authorities and everybody towards innumerable difficulties faced by the students due to lack of accommodation in hostels as they are forced to stay outside paying high rents," said Madhurima of AISA