Open Letter to HRD minister By anonymous student of Pantnagar University

From the pioneer of the green revolution to old degraded buildings, Pantnagar University has definitely seen the drastic downfall between last 50 years. Once at the pinnacle of zenith to nowhere Pantnagar has lost its charm of being one of the best universities in India. Earlier things were different in world’s second largest university, which is present in footsteps of Himalayas. Something has changed for sure maybe students, professors, administration or being a state university of small state Uttarakhand.

Technology has changed drastically from past 50 years but it seems that in Pantnagar clocks have stopped. Still, you can find students learning curriculum that was changed in the late 1970s or you can find laboratories where machines were bought 30 years ago. Unfortunately, these machines and curriculum are now out of date but they do tell about the magnificent history of Pantnagar University.

In earlier times when in India we used to have Gurukuls, Gurus were treated next to God. During that time Gurus not only used to teach children but also used to be their Guardians. Unfortunately, this system has changed a lot. Especially in Pantnagar you can easily hear some professor indirectly torturing student every day. They talk about using their power to fail you in subjects or ruining your future. Sometimes I think is this kind of education system we have? Is this the real face of some professors? Then I remember my past when schoolteachers shouted on us but they cared for us. They never differentiated between anyone of us and the way they still love us.

One day I heard something that reminded me of movie ‘3 Idiots’. One of the HODs was cursing student; I learnt ahead to hear what exactly the matter was. It was something very disturbing, something very alarming. HOD called students father and said, “Take your word back because he is doing projects all the time and roams here and there to get help”. Instead of helping that student who is innovative, who wants to create something new HOD simply crashed his dreams by shouting on him and by telling his parents that make him more focused on studies (although he was above 7 CGPA). Another story I must share, there was a guy who topped one of the biggest MBA entrance exams of the country got ill-treated by a professor in front of whole class. The professor said to the student that he knows nothing and he must have cheated to secure top position in the exam! Seriously? Instead of applauding child and making him feel better some professors dig very hard for students failure.

Students still feel they are back in the 19th century when there is shortage of basic amenities like electricity, water and sanitation. 2-3 years ago one big administrative officer even asked why we wanted the Internet in our hostels? And added that as we are still in the first and second year and we don’t need the Internet in hostels. Even when a special line is provided by the government what problems do they have one must inquire? Prime minister Narendra Modi speaks about Digital India and digital payment but on contrary, most of the office work is done by paper. From getting admission to getting the degree you have to roam to various departments and literally beg them thousand times to get your work done.

Every student is a gem, students are future of the country but I have seen massacre done with future of our country in Pantnagar. The creativity of students is never encouraged. If a student asks questions they are classified as the troublemaker. Worst is the even professor(s) make fun of students if he wants to become job giver or want to go to big university. It makes me feel bad that although now convocation has started again after 7-8 years but the still handful of students are awarded their degree on stage. Only a few students who receive Gold or silver medals are called, other students have to take their degree from worker sitting at the office. When there are so many officials, Deans, HODs in university it is really bad to see the student getting his degree, his hard work from the worker.

UGC has laid strict rules that there should not be any law that discriminates between two sexes but Pantnagar openly challenges and have made rules that truly discriminate between two sexes. Females almost have no rights like that of Taliban. There is strict entry time of 6 PM for females. They have to take permission from at least 4-5 people to even go out. Students generally have classes from 9 AM to 5 PM, What will females do in just 1 hour? Aren’t they trapped against their will? It is the fundamental duty of the university to provide security but security by locking them inside four walls is not what our rights say. How can students be secure when the main road of the university is made like Nagla to Rudrapur bypass! Anyone can enter university campus and are unrestricted. Only Security University can provide is by locking students. What is the use of 16000 acres of land when students can’t even roam freely and securely in 50 acres? University must learn from BITS Pilani and IIT Roorkee how have they changed rule against PINJRATOD movement by female students.

University administration behaves like a tyrant. From banning students to sit in Park, from banning vehicles for students even when the campus is enormously big, from punishment like semester drop of students when they were going out of campus from the main gate without permission etc. administration deals students as if they have done something really bad. The administration is so rigid that in past few years many students have appealed to honourable High Court and got a decision in their favours’. I have never heard that Pantnagar University has never won any case or treated students with respect. They with at most care want to destroy future of students. In a majority of these cases, University’s Lawyer tries to be absent and extend case to maximum time he can. Then university keeps on appealing to higher and the higher court. University has also appealed to Honorable Supreme Court Of India in some petty issues from there they have even received backlash.

The majority of colleges do not have any kind of placement. In most of the colleges, less than 10% students are placed. There are rarely 20 companies that visit whole university (approx. 5000 students). Many administrative officers are negligent about campus drives. Many administrative officers have even asked companies not to come for recruitment (because Saturdays and Sundays are holidays and Government employees can’t work 1-2 hours extra). The majority of institutional stakeholders say that you have joined this institution and you should be proud of this. You are here to get graduation degree, not for Jobs, Competitive Exams or Co-Curricular. Art and Culture are almost neglected in university. Many students face their worst time during four to five year of their stay in Pantnagar. Due to all these many are chronically depressed, many have anxiety issues. Instead of channelizing students’ energy to something creative they have made their lives terrible. Students can’t stand against administration and Professors because it is the military rule here, you are taught to say ‘YES’ when they want and to say ‘NO’ when they want. This is leading to students falling in addiction to hash and cocaine. Due to this depression, many students have done suicide (about 4-5) in past few years, which is never reported as Pantnagar have military rule.

I know University will counter the majority of above points in their way but I want people and media to ask present students of Pantnagar about problems they are facing. I also want media to carry our voice to government officials and people who want to change India in a positive way. I want to convey this to Chief Minister of Uttarakhand and Prime Minister of India and want them to instigate these in depth.

 

Yours truly

Anonymous!