The demand for good quality education is a never-ending fight in India. To be mentioned, the “Azadi slogan chanted by the students of Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi against the fees hike and the government interference in the college affairs. The counterpart of India, Pakistan is not an exception with this matter of issue. On November 18, 2019, journalist Reham Khan posted a video on her twitter page of students reciting Azadi slogans at the Faiz Literary Festival in Lahore. The major demand kept forward to the government and the public was the quality in education, de-securitization in the campus, no harassment, and restoration of the student union.
The video went viral before a few days in social media. The predominant reason for the booming of this strike is due to the budget cuts which include no scholarship fee for the students, tuition fees hike, and raise in transportation cost, said “Tooba Syed”, a Pakistan student cum activist. The students spotted in the strike are found to be the student members of the leftist progressive student collective. The progressive student federation (PSF) has said that they have planned for a massive protest on November 29 regarding the same issue.
The progressive student federation has also mentioned that the protest will be held across the country by all the committee members. Mentioning on the twitter page, the federation has expressed that “We are marching against the system which labels us as “Terrorists” for demanding clean water on campus. Puts us behind bars for opposing the dictatorship of administration on campus. We demand our right to exist with dignity”. The strand took by PSF members after a wretched incident took place this week, where 17 students of Sindh University, Jamshoro booked for sedition charges for reciting anti-Pakistan slogans against the government.
Similar post held
Protest held on 2019 November went viral across the nation but this isn’t the first time the student’s protest has happened. A similar protest was held last year in 16 different cities of the country. According to the Asian Marxist Review, progressive student federation has involved themselves in a huge protest on demanding quality education, restoration of the student union, fees hike and student representation in the management. The students have stated that the PTI government had left the student and the colleges abandoned which left directionless management. The government hasn’t taken any necessary action towards this rising issue.
As in India, the demand for the student’s rights and representation in university management is becoming a necessary fight even in Pakistan. On reacting to the protest held on November 18 at the literary fest at Lahore, where the students found to be chanting “Azadi slogan. Demand for the restoration of the student’s union, increase in tuition fees, end-to-end harassment, and the hiked transportation charges. The PSF committee has informed the media that they are going to conduct a massive protest across the country for the same issue on November 29.