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Students who had gathered at GBM Phase IV (Hostel Affairs Council) were unexpectedly interrupted by the abrupt end to the GBM brought on by unavailability of venue. Agitated students were cut short and the continuity of the GBM was broken because of time constraints.
Some questions this GBM throws up is:
1. Is it fair to schedule a GBM with a limited time slot? Considering this is the first GBM of their tenure, how can the GSes expect a year’s worth of work to be presented and discussed in a 90 minute time frame?
2. Was it right of the Chair to continuously rush the students with their questions? Isn’t the purpose of the Chair limited to mediating the proceedings and intervening only in extreme situations? While steering the GBM from a dead-end is acceptable, indicating to students that time constraints shall not permit full questioning is not.
One cannot know how a GBM shall proceed beforehand. It could go on for long, as GBM Phase II (GS Cult) did, or it may be wrapped up in a short while (e.g. GBM Phase I). However, a rigid time bound to the GBM could thwart the proceedings and suppress the students’ say which is not welcome.
3. No guarantee for a second part to the GBM was given by either the Chair, GS Cult Harsh Jhaveri or the head of the Council in question: GSHA Devashish Sethia. Even if the GBM had to be scheduled when OAT was free for only a limited time and could not be moved to another location, the least that should have been done by these democratically elected representatives is to give their word for another session, considering that no conclusion could be made on the overall work of the Council.
Following the GBM, the GSes asked the hostel GSecs how many of them felt the need for another session. 9/14 hostels have asked for another session, with Hostel 11 saying that they are onboard for another session if it is Chaired by the President of the SAC Council.
The hostels which are on board for another session were told that their hostel’s queries would be answered in writing. Surprised that students were not able to sufficiently air their grievances over 90 minutes, the DoSA now insists that all attendees of GBMs should present an agenda beforehand so that an estimate of the volume and intensity of questions can be made in advance. Part 2 of the Hostel Affairs Council GBM could be conducted shortly, only if a proper agenda for the GBM is provided beforehand and is deemed satisfactory by the DoSA.
-The views expressed are those of Nupur Joshi