February 18, 2015, New Delhi. Disha Student organisation organized a protest demonstration at the Delhi Secretariat today to raise the demands of the students of School of Open Learning, Delhi University. The demonstration was held to highlight their plight and the discrimination they face at the hands of callous university administration and apathetic governments. The students of S.O.L are deprived of basic amenities like proper classes, access to libraries etc. The number of classes officially earmarked for completing the syllabus are too few. The number of study centres over Delhi are also not sufficient to cater to 4.5 lakh students enrolled in S.O.L.
The students of S.O.L have long been neglected by the University authorities and the government. Students from humble economic backgrounds cannot afford to study in regular colleges due to hike in the fees and the decrease in the number of seats. They are left with no option but to get enrolled at S.O.L. But the problems they face at S.O.L are varied and many, first of all there is a paucity of classes, proper classes are not held, the number of students in one class is a staggering 150-200, the results of the exam are declared with such a long delay that the students studying in S.O.L cannot fill up forms for M.A or other post graduate courses, which leaves their future in a limbo.
Now that the AAP government has come into power in Delhi, the S.O.L. students are hoping that their demands will be heard and they will get what is their due. To ensure that their demands are addressed, a demonstration was held at Delhi Secretariat under the banner of Disha Student Organisation. A memorandum clearly stating their demands was submitted to the Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s office. The memorandum mentioned the demands of the S.O.L students which includes increased investment by the government in Higher education to provide regular colleges for the students studying at S.O.L, the declaration of a time bound deadline by the Delhi government on the construction of the 20 colleges it promised in its election manifesto, the Delhi government should make arrangements for holding classes for the S.O.L students in evening in the colleges run by Delhi government, to increase the number of study centres, to provide access to libraries, and university health centre, the syllabus should be completed in time and the results should be declared on time.
Access to Education is the right of every citizen and the long neglected demands of the S.O.L students should be met without any further delay. The gathering was addressed by Varuni of Disha Student Organisation, Yogesh of Naujawan Bharat Sabha, Avinash , Varsha as well as other common S.O.L. students. Slogans were shouted asking the newly incumbent Kejriwal Government to fulfill its electoral promises. Some revolutionary songs were also presented by ‘Vihaan’, the cultural outfit of Disha Student Organisation. The demonstration culminated with the assurance that a sustained and massive Charter Of Demands Campaign including signature campaign will be launched among the S.O.L. students by Disha Student Organisation without any delay.