Maybe it was the nice weather with the promise of rain or something else, but official sales figures in Delhi University could not explain the sheer number of students who continued to troop into the North Campus on the sixth day of admissions here on Tuesday.
“Around 9,440 forms were sold in total on Tuesday and out of this only about 3,526 forms were sold from the North Campus,” confirmed Dean Students’ Welfare J. M. Khurana, adding that they had also received about 12,496 completed applications.
“I had earlier thought of submitting the forms online, but it was nice and breezy in the morning so my cousins and I came here to submit them in person,” said Nisha from Ghaziabad, who did not mind coming all the way. “It was too hot all these days, so I decided to fill the form online, but the change in weather also changed my mind,” said Sahil, who also wanted to see the campus.
“Online forms are a positive change, a modern and more convenient way of getting your work done. We have even slashed the prices by half for the regular online forms and made forms for the special categories free, I wish students would take advantage of this,” said an over-worked Deputy Dean Students’ Welfare Gurupreet Tuteja.
He wanted to clear the air about some “antiquated” notions that prospective students had. “If the student says he doesn’t know how to fill an online form then it’s a big shame – especially considering the number of internet cafes that can be found in any small town and keeping in mind the sort of course they will be doing here in the university,” he said.
The reasons for not filling forms have varied from the ridiculous to the plain funny since day one. People weren’t “trusting” something they did not have on paper and numerous rumours of goof-ups like loss of forms or wrong information getting recorded or money and debit card frauds have been doing the rounds. “We have a tie-up with a national bank, it is their payment gateway and it is through those channels that the student will have to pay,” said Dr. Tuteja, adding that the online option had been personally tested by the Dean Students’ Welfare office over 20 times with “real money”.
With a large number of admission seekers coming to the campus, crowd management has also been an issue. While police barricades have been set up to prevent vehicle entry one block away from most of the main centres, minor accidents between rickshaws and motorists and slow-moving human traffic on the pavements have become the norm. “We cannot even think of removing the barricades, it will be here for at least a month,” said a duty constable near the barricades.
On Tuesday, the serpentine queues outside the counters did not reduce till about 1 p.m. which was closing time. “Most students want to submit the forms today itself and have to stand in a line twice, since the form sale and submission counters are the same,” said a university volunteer, who said tempers usually ran high as panicked students and parents tried to purchase or deposit the forms just before closing time.