Aishwarya, a B.Sc. Mathematics student, mentioned in her suicide note that she did not want to be a burden on her family and did not want a life without education.
A student of Delhi’s Lady Shri Ram College (LSR) for Women died by suicide at her hometown in Rangareddy district of Telangana on November 3, leaving behind a purported suicide note in which she cited the financial difficulties of her family. Her death has been labelled as "institutional murder" and people are demanding justice for her.
Aishwarya, a B.Sc. Mathematics student, mentioned in her suicide note that she did not want to be a burden on her family and did not want a life without education, reported News18.
According to the report, she was the state topper in the class 12 examination. She was receiving the INSPIRE scholarship from the Ministry of Science and Technology, Government of India.
However, her scholarship was delayed by the government since March, which put her and her family under extreme financial pressure, said the report citing a statement issued by the Student's Federation of India (SFI).
Aishwarya had reportedly told the LSR Students' Union Committee for Inclusive Education about the poor financial condition of her family and that the expenditure on data packs for online classes already placed an extra financial burden on her family. She further mentioned that she could not give her best to her studies as she did not have a laptop and study material was not available to her, said the report.
The student was also affected by the sudden decision of the LSR administration to revoke hostel facilities for all students except freshers, said Student Union General Secretary of LSR Unnimaya in a statement issued after the suicide. “It was allegedly conveyed to her that the scholarship amount could only come after the conclusion of the second year. The UGC and other agencies have failed to provide scholarships and cited the pandemic as an excuse for the same,” she said.
The suicide has been condemned by several organisations that pointed out that the University Grants Commission (UGC) has frozen disbursal of Junior Research Fellowships (JRF) and Senior Research Fellowships (SRF) as well.
The Jawaharlal Nehru University Students Union (JNUSU) has issued a statement saying, "this amounts to institutional murder. LSR and DST are complicit and should be held to account.”Meanwhile, the LSR alumni association ELSA has said that “the deceased had never approached the department or admin or principal or faculty for any help. LSR has a certified counsellor who is there for help for the students. College policies are very transparent regarding hostel accommodation being for one year”.