JNU and the Long March to Nowhere

Rajiv Lochan

JNU has been mired in controversies. Poor management, poor academic performance, poor facilities for research in a university whose only objective is research. It is a small university with a huge campus. The campus is over 1000 acres. On this campus work 600 faculty, 1200 non-teaching staff, 3100 UG/PG students and 5200 PhD researchers. Almost the entire faculty and half the non-teaching staff have campus housing. Of the 8300 students enrolled at JNU, 6900 have been provided hostel facility. A total of 83% of all students live in university hostels.

The interesting detail about JNU is that it thrived on gaming the system. With a change in government in 2014, the system refused to be gamed any further. Since then JNU has only generated bad news. It would be one of the few universities of the world about which so many people say that it should be shut down. It would also be one of the few universities which subsists entirely on government handouts. Its alumni do not seem to make enough money to donate it to the university. Or, perhaps the alumni think that JNU is not worth donating money. JNU claims that it provides opportunities to grow for those without resources.

Rajiv Lochan

Rajiv Lochan, the author, has studied Modern Indian History and was a research scholar at the Centre for Historical Studies in JNU. He is an acclaimed historian and is widely respected in the academic sphere.

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