On Monday (April 3, 2017), students of the University of Kashmir (KU) accused the cafeteria owners of flouting the rules and doubling the prices of food items. The cafeteria has now been sealed by the police.
The owners of the cafeteria (which is located close to the Humanities block on the campus) have apparently been violating the guidelines and looting the students for the past year.
According to the Estates department of KU (which prepares the rate lists for the cafeterias and dhabas functional inside the campus), the students in the varsity said that the cafeteria has not been abiding by the rules mentioned in the lists.
“The rate list has mentioned the cost of chicken pati as ₹15, but they are selling it at ₹30. Similarly, vegetarian food is to be sold at ₹40, instead of ₹80. Non vegetarian food is sold at ₹140 instead of the listed ₹70, while chicken kanti is sold at ₹160 instead of ₹80,” a group of students complained.
Aasif Wani, a law student of the university, said that this brazen violation (of the rules) by the owners of the cafeteria has remained unnoticed so far.
“These people are taking students for the ride. This university belongs to students, so we should be given all the benefits,” he said.
“When we informed the proctor about the matter, he tried to negotiate with the cafeteria owners. But, we warned him that this was wrong, and that he should take action against the erring owners,” he added.
Another student, Ishfaq Abdullah, said that the cafeteria owners were favouring students from the elite class.
“Only about nine percent students in the campus who belong to elite class families. The rest are from middle class families. Then, how can they afford this canteen’s food on everyday basis? This is totally unacceptable,” said Ishfaq.
He further added: “There is only one dhaba in the entire varsity that mostly remains jam-packed. The authorities must open up new dhabas that will relieve the suffering of the students.”
Bhat Tahir, a student of journalism, said that he was made to pay an extra ₹200 for no reason, whatsoever.
“A few days back, I and my friends went to the Cafe Coffee Day (CCD) in the Naseem Bagh area. We ordered coffee and the bill was ₹240. But, I was forcibly made to pay ₹440 – the extra ₹200 being for ‘seating charges’,” he said.
The chief proctor of KU, Naseer Iqbal, said that they have sealed the cafeteria.
“We have also constituted an inquiry committee that will probe the matter,” the proctor said.