Sikkim University Students Association (SUSA) has written a letter to the CMO to make the office aware of the situations that college students living in rented spaces around the state are currently facing. SUSA has appealed to the CMO, requesting a waiver of room rents for these students. Stressing on the fact that the majority of these students come from villages and small towns, most of whom belong to the strata of society with lower and informal income sources and then pointing the light towards students who are from out of the state still in Sikkim and how they are equally affected by the pandemic, SUSA has urged the Chief Minister’s Office to look into the matter and formulate either a partial or a full waiver of rents since these students are having trouble arranging finance for their monthly payments.
In the light of many relaxations since the total lockdown that has surfaced and with confirmation on re-opening of educational institutes, it is right to assume that all the students will be in a tight spot financially, due to the economic slowdowns. There is a room for much speculation to how the policies are framed if this letter is paid heed to, as there are a substantial number of students who would breathe a sigh of relief if their rents are waived off either partially or completely.
“There are lots of precedents set by many state governments. In Mizoram, all private schools are charging only 50% fees. Even Delhi government has directed to charge only tuition fees from students. In fact Delhi CM has asked the landlords to not collect rents for three months due to ongoing pandemic. Through this letter we have apprised Hon’ble Chief Minister about students from villages with meagre income. Also have we apprised about the students belonging to outside state. They are equally affected by the lockdown and we must take care of them as well. Either half or full waiver through directives or through financial assistance, we have requested Hon’ble Chief Minister,” says SUSA President, Mahesh Rai.
Here is a copy of SUSA’s letter to the CMO.