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December 8, 2019

Students demand fee cut, restoration of unions


December 8, 2019

LAHORE :A youth convention titled “Fees Must End, Employment for All and Restore Students Unions” was held Saturday in which students demanded restoration of student unions and free higher education.

A large number of students participated in the event for which, according to the organisers, the venue was changed at the eleventh hour because of cancellation of the venue where the convention was supposed to take place. A participant said after the booking of the venue near the Gaddafi Stadium was cancelled by the management, Progressive Youth Alliance (PYA) organised the event at the Bakhtiar Labour Hall.

According to a press release the main organiser of the event, Rai Asad said it was the second time the booking of the venue to hold the convention was cancelled. He said the cancellation of the venue for an event of a peaceful student organisation expressed the administrations false claims to address student issues.

Addressing the convention, Najeeb Baloch, a student of a private university, said students would have to unite, organise and strive to solve their issues of fee hike, free education and student unions.

The students also raised slogans for free education. The hall kept on resonating with the slogans, “Taleem Ka Karobar Band kro” (end business of education), “Muft Taleem Hamara Haq Hai” (free education our right), Tulaba Union Bahal Karo” (restore student unions) and “Students are not customers, universities are not shops”.

Another student, Muhammad Idrees, criticised HEC cuts. He said universities minted money from them but facilitates were not provided to students. Students were deliberately being kept away from politics, he added.

Akhtar Munir, a young poet, recited revolutionary poetry and said students participation proved the fact that the administration’s suppression of students could not deter them from struggling for their rights.

Waqas Ahmad, another student, said he had come to Lahore four years back with high dreams in his eyes.

Four years back, he came to know that his university was not ratified by the HEC. PYA Chairman Umar Riaz also spoke.

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