Students from leading institutes in the city will be launching their own campaign with solidarity on the 'occupy UGC' movement across the country on Thursday. As part of their 'Shiksha ka Sikka' campaign, students from Mumbai University, Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), IIT-Bombay and Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR) plan to send a rupee coin each sealed in an envelope to the University Grants Commission (UGC), ministry of human resources and development (MHRD) as a mark of their protest.
"We extend our support to the national movement. We are expecting around 250 students from across the city to participate in the protest on Thursday," said Ajmal Khan, a PH D student from the TISS.
The 'occupy UGC' movement started in the country after the UGC decided to withdraw the non-NET fellowship grants given to M Phil and Ph D students. Following protests from students across the country, the ministry had rolled back the circular announcing the discontinuation of the fellowship.
Under the fellowship, a grant of Rs 5,000 per month for 18 months is given to M Phil students and Rs 8,000 per month for four years to Ph D students, who do not receive any other UGC grants. The protesting students are demanding that the fellowship should be restored, increased and extended to all students in higher education registered in central, state and deemed universities without the condition of merit and increase in the number of fellowships for existing schemes.