JORHAT, March 19 - Over 100 students of Assam Women�s University (AWU) on the outskirts of Rowriah here began a 36-hour hunger strike from noon today to protest the government�s decision to convert the university to a technical institute.
The students also demanded appointment of a permanent Vice-Chancellor and to develop the university into a full-fledged one by providing the necessary infrastructure and appointing permanent faculty members and staff.
The students, holding banners and placards, sat in front of the Jorhat Deputy Commissioner�s office on AT Road.
The protesting students said they were facing a lot of difficulties in pursuing their courses at the university, which they said was a university �only in name� as there was no basic infrastructure and a proper administrative machinery to run the institute. The students threatened to launch an agitation if their demands were not fulfilled by the government.
�The government cannot play politics with our future. It is the duty of the government to fulfill the commitments of the past governments for the benefit of all, especially taking into account the future of the students,� a protesting student said.
On March 8 too, on the occasion of International Women�s Day, the students had staged a demonstration in front of the Deputy Commissioner�s office.
Representatives of the protesting students on that day had met Jorhat district administration officials and requested them to take up the matter with the Chief Minister�s Office. The administration reportedly assured the students that they will approach the CMO on the issue.
The AWU has been running under the support of Assam Agricultural University here. AAU Vice-Chancellor Dr KM Bujarbaruah is officiating as the Vice-Chancellor for the AWU as per an arrangement made by the erstwhile government of Tarun Gogoi during whose tenure the university was established in an old building of the AAU in 2014.
The Chief Minister is the Chancellor of the AWU, which was established after an Act was passed in the State Assembly in 2013. The University started in a makeshift renovated grain storage facility of AAU.