TISS students call off stir after agreement

GUWAHATI: Students under the GoI-PMS (Government of India-Post Matric Scholarship) scheme of Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) here on Wednesday called off their agitation following an agreement with the institute’s administration on their demands.

The association had since January 17 been staging the strike, demanding complete fee waiver for SC, ST and OBC (GoI-PMS) students besides implementation of National Commission for Schedule Tribe recommendations and a mechanism for affordable education.

“The association has decided to call of the strike immediately after an agreement was made with the institute’s administration,” Manta Wangsu, a member of the GoI-PMS Students’ Association, TISS (Guwahati campus), told The Shillong Times on Wednesday.

Among the demands of the association agreed upon are rationalisation of hostel fee with opportunities for GoI-PMS students to approach the ST/SC cell and equal opportunity cell for review of the rationalised fee if found unsatisfactory besides full support to needy students.

“The administration should consult with representatives from GoI-PMS students (from Guwahati campus) association at the time of rationalisation of the hostel fee,” the agreement said.

“The GoI-PMS students will apply for student aid. The panel for student aid should ensure that the students who require larger financial assistance be given aid to the extent that their dining and hostel charges are covered. The panel should recommend that students should be given additional financial help when needed and that there should be provision for review of the student aid if the fee burden is not reduced,” it said.

According to the agreement, original certificates would be given to students after completion of their course.

“The panel for deciding on student aid should be represented by three ST/SC/OBC GOI PMS students (one from each category). Gender representation should be ensured,” it added.

“Besides, the components of the total upfront fee payable at the time of admission should be reviewed as many students were discouraged from taking admission or faced discrimination for not being able to pay. If a student is unable to pay upfront fee, there should be no discrimination after admission,” the agreement said.

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