Ever since the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) announced a fare hike, the University of Delhi has been raging with a number of sit-ins and demonstrations. On Friday, Vishwavidyalaya metro station, the epicentre of all anti-fare hike protests, saw yet another demonstration.
At 1 p.m., about 50 students predominantly belonging to the All India Students’ Association (AISA) and the Students’ Federation of India (SFI) formed a human chain outside the Vishwavidyalaya metro station to protest against the metro fare hike. They demanded metro concessional passes for students. The human chain gained the attention of many onlookers who also joined in.
Talking to DU Beat about the demonstration, Kawalpreet Kaur, President of AISA DU asserted, “The whole hike in fare shows that the government is only catering to the rich and has no empathy for the common people. Within six months the fare has increased tremendously. The Delhi Metro is a public entity and not a profit-making body for whose profit the fare is being increased. I believe that it is the student community who will suffer the most. We will not swallow this yet another increase and will organise a huge movement in coming days until the hike is rolled back. Also, we demand that DU students should be given special concessional passes for the metro.”
Another student who participated in the human chain said, “We are not claiming that these things will lead to any concrete result, but at least we are trying to make our voices heard. Sometimes just dissent in itself is important.”
Earlier on Monday, a group of activists from the National Students’ Union of India (NSUI) had a sit-in at Vishwavidyalaya metro station and stopped the train in its tracks. It briefly disrupted metro services.
While agitation for affordable transportation is necessary, whether or not these protests will result in policy change can only be established with time.
Feature Image Credits: All India Students’ Association