NIT Silchar students in Assam call off hunger strike

Silchar, Sep 23 (IANS): Students of NIT Silchar in Assam have called off their five-day hunger strike after the institute's director assured to consider their demands, officials said on Saturday.

The 2000-odd students, who were on a hunger strike levelling serious allegations against the Dean, Academics B.K. Roy in connection with the suicide of a third year electrical engineering student, Koj Buker, decided to end their protest on Friday night.

Officials from NIT administration handed over the packets of fruit juice to the protesting students.

One of the protesting students said, "The authorities promised to fulfill our two primary demands—Professor Roy will be removed from his position within the next couple of days and there will be no action against the students who launched a protest following Buker's death."

Earlier on Friday, the director of the engineering institute professor Dilip Kumar Baidya, met with the protesters and urged them to call-off the strike. He expressed regret to the students for not getting in touch with them sooner and gave them the assurance that professor BK Roy would be removed from his position as dean of academics within the following two days.

But the students demanded a written statement from the director and will not end the hunger strike until they receive it. The students presented Professor Baidya with a list of their demands during the hour-long meeting that took place at the new gallery on Friday afternoon.

Following the apparent suicide of third-year Electrical Engineering student Koj Buker, the hunger strike began on morning of September 18. According to the authorities, Buker's hanging body was discovered in the institute's hostel-7 on September 15. The dean of academics, professor BK Roy, was accused by the students of abetting the suicide.

Students made two demands to the director on Friday afternoon: first, they want professor Roy to resign, and second, they want no disciplinary action to be taken against the students for protesting on campus.

"We sympathise with the family of the deceased student, and we understand your agitation. We apologize for not being able to get in touch with you sooner. Within the following two days, we are prepared to meet the demands," professor Baidya told the students.

He also told reporters there, "We feel that the issues have been almost resolved."



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Title: NIT Silchar students in Assam call off hunger strike

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