MANIT SCHOLARS ASK: Three months to submit PhD research paper, how fair it is ?

MP Pragya Thakur intervenes, protest deferred, management agrees to reconsider

Staff ReporterUpdated: Friday, January 21, 2022, 11:44 PM IST
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MANIT research scholars stage dharna for stipend on Friday. |

Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh): The PhD scholars of Maulana Azad National Institute of Technology (MANIT) on Friday evening postponed agitation after MP Pragya Thakur intervened in the matter. Thakur talked to the registrar and dean, academics of MANIT, regarding demands of research scholars.

Lok Sabha MP Pragya Thakur meet agitating MANIT research scholars who are demanding stipend on Friday.

Lok Sabha MP Pragya Thakur meet agitating MANIT research scholars who are demanding stipend on Friday. |

She then urged the protesting scholars to give some time to management to reconsider their decision and postpone their protest. Thakur talked to MANIT registrar Binod Doley and asked him to reconsider the decision. The research scholars have demanded to extend date of submission of their research papers.

Doley told Free Press that we have decided to place studentsí demand before the senate. ìWe will also place their other demands. We have also decided to provide students the pending HRAs from April 2021. The rest of the arrears cannot be paid,î he said. The MANIT senate has 90 members.

The PhD scholars of MANIT started an indefinite sit-in in the premises from Thursday demanding an extension to submit their research papers. They stayed back in the premises overnight despite cold wave, covered in the blankets they brought from home. They demanded that their voices be heard.

The scholars have alleged that the administration has become a dictator, intentionally making the submissions time-consuming with formalities that exist at no other IIT or NIT in the country, and at the same time, giving very little time to finish their research.

A student requesting anonymity said, ìWe are the only NIT in the country where the research scholars are required to get permission/approval from the director or the dean to submit their papers. That takes extra time. Further, the process gets lengthier as the papers go through several rounds of reading and making changes before final submission.î

The administration issued an order in October that the students will have to submit their SCOPUS paper (that require lesser experimentation and as such lesser time) as no extension will be provided to them if they have completed three years of research.

The scholars, on the other hand, claim that they were denied entry in premises to continue with their research and perform experiments in view of coronavirus in 2021.

Another research scholar told Free Press, ìSCOPUS papers usually need a time of six months to finish and SCI/SCIE papers require up to 9-12 months as per availability of resources. We were informed in October that we will receive no extension if we are submitting SCOPUS papers, despite the closure during Covid first and second wave.î

The scholars were to complete three years on December 26 and were informed about non-extension in October, which resulted in them having little time to complete their research. MANIT administration had earlier given extension to scholars submitting SCOPUS papers too like those submitting SCI/SCIE in November 2019.

A research scholar who took admission in 2018 told Free Press, If the previous batch was given extension, even when there was no Covid-like situation, why is the administration adamant on deciding against the same for us? We had no time to perform experiments. Three months to submit a research paper, how fair is that?

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