In response to deteriorating food quality, residents of the Hansraj College Hostel have boycotted the mess.
On 29th February 2020, the students of Hansraj College residing in the hostel decided to stop the consumption of food made in their mess and proceeded to lock the mess from outside. This action, they said, was taken in response to the poor quality of food they were being served for the past few weeks.
“For the past three weeks, the non-teaching staff (the mess workers) have been on strike. Since then, we haven’t been served food as per the menu. The mess now operates on a self-service basis, and we’re only being served basic food like rice and dal. The food quality is terrible. As a result, it was decided that we won’t have lunch from today, and while lunch was cooked, no one ate it and we went and locked the mess.” said Vinay Pratap Singh, a resident of the hostel and a student of Hansraj College.
The students then had a meeting with the warden where they laid down their demands. “We have multiple demands because there are a lot of problems, but our basic demand right now is a bringing back of normalcy. While we understand that mess workers cannot come back right now, we should at least be hiring new cooks from outside. This is also something that had been promised to us by the warden but hasn’t been done for the past seventeen days. This is a very serious problem because the food not being cooked properly is also negatively affecting people’s health. We won’t be wasting the already cooked food though, we’ve asked the warden to have the food given to needy through the Hansraj National Service Scheme (NSS)”, Vinay added.
The students met with the principal in the evening who tried to reach out to the Workers’ Union, who have declined to come back to work at the moment. What remains to be seen is how the administration responds to the demands and how these protests affect those made by the Staff Union. For the moment, though, the lockdown has been called off.
Image Credits: Hansraj College Website
Khush Vardhan Dembla