Girls Hostel Issue @ NUJS: The Problem And Some Alternative Solutions

Once upon a time, I used to highlight NUJS related issues on my blog A First Taste of Law, and in fact it was started because I wanted to write about a fee hike that made my law school journey uncertain at that time, as I had no clue how to pay the increased fee. I am glad to re-publish some of the articles from that closed down blog. It is to be noted that since the time it was published, NUJS made a lot of efforts to increase hostel rooms for girls and have in recent years have acquired some land adjacent to the campus to build more infrastructure including hostels. Secure with this knowledge, lets travel back in time. I fancy that this article may be used by some gender issues researchers to draw some very wise conclusions 😀

Girls Hostel Issue @ NUJS: The Problem And Some Alternative Solutions

The author of this article is Jenisha Parikh, who is a member of the first batch in NUJS that pays in excess of 1 lakh 80 thousand in annual fee.

One would expect that facilities will improve after such a giant fee hike. Well, seems that is wrong. Now female students from her batch and the next batch are being asked to stay in triple occupancy in rooms that are made from two people. And the administration never consulted any student about this. I hope this blog will not remain the only place where she can voice her concerns about adverse living conditions that are being forced upon the first year and second year students, if they are female, at NUJS.

We left for our holidays with a glimmer of hope that as we become ‘seniors’ and get promoted to the second year, we might have a single room or that the status quo, (that is two girls in one room) shall prevail. One of my batchmates thought that it would be a good idea to arrive two days early to college  so that she could settle down before the classes resumed. However, shewasinforarudeshockassheenteredtheNUJSGirl’sHostel. She was informed that a two-seater room would now accommodate three girls!Also, the rooms have not been properly allocated yet, leaving the poor girl fuming.

This piece of news has created great furore as we were kept in the dark about the new arrangement. Even after paying skyrocketing fees, it is difficult to accept that they could even think of keeping us in such abysmal conditions!

Some people might think what is the hullabaloo all about as many hostels accommodate three people in a room. Well, the problem with the arrangement is as follows:

1. This is not a case where the rooms are meant for three people. It is two  seater room that is going to be stuffed with three students. Therefore, it is not that the students are simply crying for privacy. It also involves the question of great inconvenience as the room is just not for three people!

2. The number of bathrooms would have been constructed keeping in mind the strength of students per floor. However, now the strength per floor has increased but the number of bathrooms have not! Thisisanothermajorproblemwhichneedstobeaddressedandthisproblemcannotbesolvedbysimplystuffingstudentsintheroomstotheirinconvenience.

Keeping in mind these two broad issues, we can say that the main problem is the increase in the strength of girls per batch. Therefore, the simplest solution is to increase the capacity of the hostel. However, since this simple solution was not adopted in the previous year, we now need a temporary solution to this issue.

On questioning the warden of the girl’s hostel as to whether this is a temporary arrangement or a permanent one, she replied that it‘might’ be the latter. It is disappointing to see that this arrangement is simply being  forced on us without even discussing further options! Definitely, this arrangement is not the ‘only option’. Discussions amongst us have already started and we have come to the following conclusion/ temporary options which they should adopt:

1. Alternate accommodation to a nearby building.

2. A floor reserved for girls in the boys hostel. We can have certain entry points sealed on that floor.

3. Space in the recreational room is being wasted which can be converted into rooms/dorms. They are planning to create a reading room in the recreational room (as if the library is nonexistent). Further, the girl’s mess can also be used as a dormitory.
5. Some students have also suggested that NUJS must reduce its intake capacity. However, I do not feel that it solves our problem. This crisis was foreseen well in advance by everyone. So pre-emptive measures should have been taken to accommodate everyone comfortably. The solution is to find a suitable accommodation, not reduce seats just because there are too many girls getting admission every year!
However, in order to ensure that this problem never arise again, we need to adopt a pragmatic solution, without compromising the living conditions of students. Thus,  a permanent solution would be to construct additional floors in the girl’s hostels that would automatically increase the capacity of the hostel.

I hope thar someone is listening…

 

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