Till a fortnight ago, the corridors of Rajdhani College in West Delhi wore a rather deserted look with few students turning up there despite it being one of the centres selling and accepting the optical mark reader (OMR) admission forms for Delhi University admissions, as few wanted to secure admission here.

But as Delhi University announced its first cut-off list with sky-high marks, the college was much in demand on Thursday as students made a beeline for it because of its relatively lower cut-offs and in order to get a toehold in the university.

Sitting near the entrance of the college and filling his form was Samil Aggarwal, who was accompanied by his father. A pass-out of Delhi Public School, R.K. Puram and a resident of Naraina Vihar, Samil had hoped to make it to one of the premium North Campus colleges with his mighty 94.5 per cent marks. And yet he found not only those elite colleges out of bounds with his scores but also Commerce being out of reach for him in Rajdhani College.

So, he has for the time being settled for Economics (Honours) here. “In the first list, Rajdhani College was the only place where I could secure a seat throughout DU. Even here, the cut-off for Commerce (Hons) is 95 per cent. My marks made me qualify only for Eco (Hons) whose cut off is 94 per cent,” said the youngster in a reconciliatory tone.

On being asked why Rajdhani was chosen by him, his father puts in with a dead calm: “He did not have any other options! This is just to safely secure a seat in DU with the first list. But we have our hopes pinned on the subsequent lists.”

Samil is hopeful of getting Commerce in Sri Venkateshwara College once all the lists are disclosed. Although he does stress on getting the course, he wants to be in a good college. Plan B for him is “to go for chartered accountancy if the DU dream doesn’t work out”.

Sakshi Bajaj has secured her seat in the Physics (Hons) course of the college. Explaining her position, she said: “Securing a 90.75 per cent in my boards has not done me any good. This is the only college I could get in with the first list. But there are other lists as well, so let’s see.”

Sakshi has done her schooling from Little Angel’s School here and claims the cut-offs at Rajdhani are completely unjustified. “For an off-campus college, they are being awfully unfair for setting up such high cut-offs,” she exclaimed, stating that her goal is to secure a seat in the subject in Hindu College.

Another student with over 90 per cent Divya Narang agreed with Sakshi’s views. “The first list made it possible for me to get through Economics (Hons) in Rajdhani, whose cut-offs have been a nightmare. But hopefully with the other lists, I’ll be able to get a seat in at least Ramjas College.”

With students securing over 90 per cent in their Board exams not making it to colleges of their choice in the first list, despondency was writ large on many faces. But they are hopeful that the first cut-off would come down drastically to settle closer to the levels of the previous years.