The COVID-19 pandemic has appeared in an unparalleled economic recession and state indifference. The most deprived section of society (class, caste, and gender) has suffered these manufactured disasters’ most severe wrath. We have seen students dying by suicide due to exclusionary pre-requisite infrastructures for online classes like in Kerala (where a Dalit girl died by suicide cause she couldn’t afford a smartphone). Several such cases have been coming to light and thus highlighting the exclusionary nature of Indian education.
Aishwarya, an aspiring student with immense potential, from a working-class family that had to mortgage their house to sponsor their education. For her academic brilliance in class 12th examinations, she earned the INSPIRE Fellowship from the Ministry of Science and Technology, making it possible for her to pursue higher education with relative ease. However, the government offered scholarship, was too delay to reach, calling the pandemic as a reason. The student who was due to receive her first instalment of the scholarship in March was frustrated with her life’s stoppage, leading to end her own life.
In light of her suicide note, the varsity has yet again sustained an indifferent stance, shown an unnerving indifference. And has refused any role in the factors that enforced their student to take her own life. The varsity claims that suicide resulted from particular issues concerning the student and nothing to do with it.
With not getting any support from the university, online education’s economic burden is too heavy a burden to bear for most students. Despite reoccurred requests, the university did not show any support to such students. It paid no heed to the students’ requests concerning the long lectures that has taken a toll on the mental health. It also causes financial difficulty to the students’ family. As a consequence, their family finds it challenging to afford costly internet services required for online classes.
Submitted By: Nikita Bisht