The sale of application forms in Delhi University on day one of admissions has dipped. Sales figures at the end of the day totalled 34,805 forms, a far cry from its day one sales of 50,245 forms last year. Every year since 2012, the university issues guidelines and also appeals to students during open days to desist coming physically to the campus and instead opt for online forms.
However, there are always students and their parents who either do not “believe” in online forms or want to “check out” the North Campus.
“We want to see what the North Campus looks like, we keep watching television visuals that show students waiting to buy forms so we decided to come,” said Nithika, who had come from Rohini with her two friends.
Officials in the university had no answer to the poor sales of forms. The dip is being seen by many as being a result of the negative reaction to the four-year undergraduate programme (FYUP) that was implemented last year, especially the hugely unpopular and compulsory foundation courses. The additional one year expense also remains a sore point with many.
“Public opinion is built by students and over 54,000 students who took admissions last year seem to have carried the stories of the foundation courses and the faulty FYUP to the public domain. This morning I received a call from a student in Agra with 93 per cent that her family does not want to send her to DU because of the additional expense,” said Abha Dev Habib, a teacher who has been actively protesting against the FYUP since its inception.
“The cut-offs are so high that I can get admissions only in some college which are lesser-known. And, it is a known fact that DU's reputation is derived from around 10 or 12 good colleges. The lesser-known colleges have such poor infrastructure that I am better off in a decent college in a private university,” said Anita Sasta, who had scored 73 per cent in her Class XII exams.
Whereas in the past, several counters in the Arts Faculty and Miranda House College distributed forms efficiently, sales from these have since been stopped. Some of the new centres, Daulat Ram College being one, were a scene of utter chaos.
However, at other centres such as Hansraj College and Khalsa College in the North Campus, the distribution went on without a hitch and even provisions and amenities for students and their parents, such as drinking water and places to sit, were aplenty.