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Image Source: The Indian Express

Research Scholars studying regional development at Jawaharlal Nehru University are shocked after returning to the JNU labs as their soil samples taken before the lockdown have been destroyed. The research scholars at JNU left their soil samples at the laboratory before the lockdown and after returning found their samples infested with termites and fungus. JNU scholars are stressed after the occurrence as the date of submission is approaching.

Students at JNU are confronting with this problem in the nanoscience building since 2016. In November and September, a JNU professor had written a letter to the University citing the issue but no redressal has been received.

A research scholar at JNU, Ishita Manna who is to submit her theses in June 2021 said that she collected the samples from Lahaul and Beas Kund which have now been eradicated by fungus and termites.

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Research Scholars at JNU stressed due to destroyed samples

Manna added that she cannot even go back and recollect the samples as the roads have been blocked. While the perfect time to go and collect samples falls in May and October. Lack of maintenance and supervision have destroyed the research lab entirely. Even the machines installed in the lab are rusted.

JNU professor Milap Chand Sharma, who had been writing to the JNU’s administrative branch for the past 4 years said that when the lab was built appropriately, a dump of garbage on the terrace was not tidied. A committee at JNU demanded its reallocation but it was halted due to objections by the University chairperson. He added that he wrote a letter to the University around 115 days ago but got no response from the University. The lab would have sustained for 20-30 years but the lack of attention over the maintenance is the cause for its bad shape.

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