Protesting AISA activists detained at UGC in Delhi

New Delhi, Oct 23 (IANS) Over 100 All India Students’ Association (AISA) activists were detained on Friday while protesting the University Grants Commission (UGC) decision to scrap non-NET fellowship, an activist said.

The association, which has been protesting here at the UGC office at the ITO square since Wednesday over scrapping the non-National Eligibility Test (NET) fellowship, also demanded the UGC not only restored the scholarship but also increased the fellowship amount.

“Police detained our over 100 activists in the morning from the UGC headquarters as we wanted to meet UGC chairman Ved Prakash to discuss the issue,” AISA’s Om Prasad told IANS.

The association, while demanding release of its detained members, said it would continue its protest until their demands are heard.

A senior police official told IANS that protesting activists were detained and taken to Bhalswa Dairy police station (near Jahangirpuri area).

Hundreds of students from various educational institutions such as Jawaharlal Nehru University, the University of Delhi, Jamia Millia Islamia, and Ambedkar University are camping at the UGC office to press tgheir demand for restoration of the fellowship to the research scholars pursuing M.Phil. and Ph.D.

The UGC started the non-NET fellowship in 2008 to encourage research in the universities.

“The scholarship encouraged students from different backgrounds to continue their research and what is required is to increase the amount from the paltry sum of Rs.5,000 for M.Phil. students and Rs.8,000 for Ph.D. scholars. Instead, the government scrapped it,” the AISA said in a statement.

The scheme of non-NET fellowship was discontinued by the UGC.

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