Following months of struggle, the PhD and MPhil students of Savitribai Phule Pune University (SPPU) finally have a reason to rejoice as the varsity officials have decided to restart stipend distribution to the scholars based on merit.
The university authorities, on Tuesday, through a circular declared that the procedure for stipend distribution would be re-instituted, however, with a number of conditions to ensure that only meritorious scholars receive it. The move came after students continued the protest near the vice-chancellor’s (VC) office, on Monday. It was during a brief meeting followed by the agitation, where VC Karmalkar had verbally agreed to re-institute it.
Followed by the written declaration, the university has also released additional forms on the website to begin the procedure. As per the new notice, to be eligible for the stipend students are required to submit a report of progress in their research every six months. Their work will then be presented in front of a committee appointed by the respective departments, to be scrutinised and reviewed.
Students will also have to regularly participate in organising or presenting their research papers in seminars organised by the departments. Based on the recommendations by the committee members and their overall performance, they will be receiving the said stipend every month.
“We were assured by the vicechancellor that justice will be served. Now with the written letter at hand, we are both rejoiced and ready to fulfil the conditions put forth by them,” said Satish Gore, PhD student, department of English and president of national students union of India's (NSUI), SPPU. Earlier, PhD students received a monthly stipend of
~8,000, while MPhil students got
~5,000, which was stopped by the university citing budgetary cuts.
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