Action and reaction
The strike is an expression of formulating a public opinion in a democracy. Popular reaction is not always a ‘yes’ to the government’s actions and policies. The administrative action might have an equal and opposite reaction. Protests in JNU for fee roll back, or previously in Delhi University over roll back of four-year undergraduate programme (FYUP), were necessary. These were affecting a large number of students. If the government rejects a dialogue, students are forced to go on strike.
— Charu Mathur, assistant professor, ARSD College, University of Delhi
Meeting Legitimate demands
The students have the right to express their grievances freely. If their legitimate grievances are not addressed at the appropriate forum by the university authorities, then they are within their rights to protest in a peaceful manner. It is the joint responsibility of the students and the university that the valid demands get a patient hearing and the situation does not reach a point where the academic activities start suffering. Blaming only one party would not be help in breaking the deadlock.
— Om Prakash, assistant professor, Department of German Studies, BHU
Dialogue is imperative
In a democracy, students have the right to boycott classes or go on strikes to get their demands fulfilled. However, boycotting classes and strikes disrupt the academic calendar of the university, which affects students’ academic pursuits. It is necessary to take confidence-building measures such as organising meetings and interacting with the students to remove their dissatisfaction on certain issues. Dialogue between students and authorities is imperative in order to restore peace and resolve disputes at an early stage.
— Aparajita Biswas, former professor , University of Mumbai
Students are the victims
Students do not go on strike out of their own free will. They are a victim of circumstances since authorities force them to stage protests and bear the loss of academic activities. The onus of the protest should be on the oppressor not the oppressed. Authorities should be questioned on the adverse impact of strikes.
— Adarsh Kumar, research scholar, JNU