Over 400 students had queued up to take admission to B. Tech Computers and Electronics course on Friday

Delhi University’s Maharaja Agrasen College was found guilty of brazenly flouting all rules and regulations while grossly undermining what it means to be fair when it suddenly decided to close its doors for admissions into its B. Tech Computers and Electronics course on Friday morning, a day before the formal and legal closure of admissions.

“On the first day of admissions many seats were full, and on Friday as soon as they opened the admissions counter, within one hour the seats were full and the admissions committee panicked. There are strict university rules that the admissions counters remain open for three days and admit every student who comes to the college to take admissions. The college was aware of this and so not to be caught in the wrong, the people conducting the admissions decided to vanish from the spot,” said Bhupinder Chaudhry, a History teacher in the college who thought it was completely unfair. He added that a minimum of 400 students were waiting to take admissions.

After a while, the students could not stand it any longer, windows started getting smashed and stones were being pelted into the administrative office and the principal was forced to call the police. “The situation got tense and the teachers called the students and their parents into the auditorium and tried to mediate with them. The principal explained that he was helpless, he didn’t have the infrastructure to deal with so many students and after a while he came up with a solution.”

The “solution” is downright illegal. What the principal suggested was this – “A merit list is drawn up from among those who were gathered here, angry and agitated, and the seats will be selectively given to them.”

By then, the time was 1-30 p.m. the time when the counters can be “legally” closed and the students and their parents were forced to leave, they took their troubles to the Dean Students’ Welfare office. “This is not something we expect from a trusted institution like DU whom we believe has its colleges answerable to it, perhaps new or private universities do not administer their colleges properly…but not DU, at least we thought so and that is why we are here,” said Sandip Jain, a distressed parent who had reached the Dean Students’ Welfare office in North Campus at about 6 p.m.

The entire story, however, was rubbished by the Maharaja Agrasen College principal Sunil Sondhi who said: “None of this is true; we were all there the whole day. We received too many applications and we lost a lot of time verifying documents, and that is why we could not admit all the students, who were more than 500 in number. This year the colleges have to verify documents like SC/ST certificates and PWD applications and we lost more time again because of this. We will admit students who come tomorrow.”

Many colleges in Delhi University declare high cut-offs to avoid such a situation, and despite all precautions if the numbers flocking to the college exceed the number of seats they have – they still admit the students, not to be fair but because they are compelled to do so, under the university’s directive which is re-issued to be strictly followed, year after year. “No College, no principal has ever had the audacity to pull off such a swindle, ever,” said a teacher from another college who has been part of admissions committees for several years.

He is correct; in 2012 Ramjas College with a sanctioned strength of 1,339 was forced to admit 2,472 students, Hindu College with the highest cut-off last year was forced to admit an approximate 1,000 students against its sanctioned strength of about 700. Hans Raj College had around 1,154 but took in about 1,300 students.

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