An image claiming to show buildings inside the JNU situated in the national capital is being circulated widely as a WhatsApp forward alleging that the J&K hostel inside the university campus with a capacity to house 400 students, provides free accommodation to Muslims from the state and does not allow members of other religions including Hindus to be housed there. Newschecker has found the claim to be false.
Newschecker received several messages on our WhatsApp tipline (9999499044) requesting to fact check the claim that J&K hostel in JNU admitted only Muslim students.
To check the veracity of the claim, Newschecker began by analysing the image thoroughly and found that the sign on the entrance of the building reads ‘J&K hostel Jamia Millia Islamia’. On looking up the keywords ‘JNU’ & ‘J&K Hostel’, we were unable to find any relevant information. On checking the official website for JNU’s hostel accommodation, we found no such hostel, and learnt that the hostels located on the JNU premises are named after important rivers in India, helping us conclude that the hostel building seen on the viral image is actually situated in Jamia Millia Islamia and not Jawaharlal Nehru University.
We conducted a reverse image search on the image of the hostel building in the viral post and found a tweet by PDP leader Waheed Ur Rehman Para from 2018. In his tweet, Para thanked the then J&K CM Mehbooba Mufti and the then Home Minister Rajnath Singh for making the hostel a reality.
Further, we looked up the words ‘Jamia Hostel’ ‘J&K’ and ‘Mehbooba Mufti’ and found an report by The Hindu, which revealed that “The MoU was signed in presence of former Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram, former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah and former Vice-Chancellor Najeeb Jung.”
“The plan for the hostel was first conceived in 2012, when a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between Jamia and the Ministry of Home Affairs. A senior Ministry official said the project was expedited after Mr. (Rajnath) Singh’s visits to the State over the past two years,” it said and added that all expense of the hostel building was borne by the State government initially which was later reimbursed by the Home Ministry.
On further research, Newschecker was able to find a hostel manual for the year 2019-2020, which listed the J&K hostel. According to the information available in the manual, the following are the criteria for admission into the J&K hostel.
a) Accommodation in the University Hostel is available only to bonafide students of full time courses.
b) Applicants must have secured a minimum of 45% marks in aggregate in the last qualifying examination.
c) As seats are limited in the hostels, students whose parents/spouse reside and work in Delhi/NCR are not necessarily eligible for the hostel accommodation.
Nowhere does it mention that the hostel will not or does not provide accommodation to Hindus or members of any specific religious community, nor does it specify that the accommodation was free of cost for Muslims students from J&K.
On perusing the document further, we learnt that the hostel fee waiver was made only in special cases. “Physically challenged students and whose parents’ annual income is not above Rs.1.50 lakhs per annum are exempted from the payment of Room Rent (supporting document required as per JMI norms),” the document reads, proving that the claim that Muslim students from J&K could avail the hostel facility free of cost, was not true.
Newschecker also spoke to Ahmad Azeem, Public Relations Officer of Jamia Millia Islamia, who clarified that the allegations are absolutely false. “The hostel was built with the funds from the Home Ministry and began functioning since 2017. Students are admitted to hostels purely on merit basis. We do not have state-specific hostel arrangement, and religion of the student is not a criteria for intake into the hostels either,” he said.
A viral image showing the J&K Hostel in Delhi’s Jamia Millia Islamia is being shared as a hostel in JNU exclusively for Muslim students from JNU free of cost.
Result: Fabricated Content/False
Tweet by Waheed Ur Rehman Para
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