I am a Research Scholar of M.Phil Final year at Jawaharlal Nehru University. Already I was going through a huge crunch in my life because of COVID-19 where I had to return home from my university campus. I had left all my books and study materials in the hostel, thinking I would come back and resume my research work. I live in Bihar where obviously the internet does not work as efficiently as it does in the metro cities. So, I was really struggling with it throughout and I had to move to a particular spot outside my house to get a good network.
Somehow, I managed to start writing my chapter of the dissertation. The whole day’s struggle was giving me atleast something as a result and I felt that I could complete a chapter before I resume my university and then sit in my library and wite the rest of my chapters well. This was my plan, but nature had something else for me to do. My village had to face the flood and all my ideas which I had in mind to put it in my dissertation were drowned deep in. I had to pack all my belongings, laptop, a few of the papers, and keep them high on a cupboard while making sure that the water didn’t enter my room. This is how my whole day was spent.
I was praying for something better to happen and I get back to my university where I could complete the research work and complete my submissions on time. I was getting really anxious thinking about meeting the deadlines. I have not received my fellowship since January. Like me, many students have been stranded across the country.
Even as my troubles increase with every passing day, the government has brought in “New Education Policy 2020” which has been approved by the cabinet without even being placed in the parliament for debate and deliberation. The new policy actually left me speechless as I read that the M.Phil degree will be scrapped. This means that the two years (from 2018 to 2020) which I have given to my M.Phil will be scrapped in future, and the degree will be of no use. Even after completing my M.Phil, the highest degree which will be counted would be my Masters.
This is the most unfair of all the things that happened to me. I dedicated my two years to get this degree, and just as I am in the process of writing my final dissertation, I get to know that it will have no importance in future! I feel I have lost the battle and efforts I have put in throughout to get this degree. The government really did not think about the current students who are doing this degree, who were trying to make a career in research.
M.Phil is one of the most important courses, which helps students to do good research. This government is continuously putting out their arbitrary decisions without even thinking about the students, this is highly condemnable. Once again this government is restricting the marginalized section of students from entering the research institutions. Students coming from regional universities, non-English medium colleges will have to face the brunt.
M.Phil has always been a rigorous research course in which scholars get to learn most about research and further produce the best of national and international research. It helped students to build an understanding of doing better research work in their Ph.D.
This is unacceptable.