Dhritiman Ray had been awaiting his degree since 2017, when he graduated from the Delhi University (DU). With no signs of the degree, he approached the Delhi High Court on 6th July 2020. The issue took a hilarious note when DU stated that owing to lack of paper, it failed to confer the degree on time.
On 6th July 2020, Dhritiman Ray, a 25 year-old freelance mental health practitioner approached the Delhi High Court against DU. Ray completed his Post-Graduation in Psychology from Zakir Hussain College in 2017 but hasn’t received his degree yet
As per reports, Ray wished to pursue his higher education at King’s College, London. However, due to lack of a degree, he couldn’t apply to the the concerned College. The degree is usually conferred to the graduates after a year. Thus, the University provides the students with a special “Degree Certificate” which acts as a provisional degree so that the students don’t suffer any disadvantages while applying for higher education.
“The institute wanted a degree with conferral date — the date on which the degree is officially awarded. It was not there on the special certificate which was given to me by DU in December 2019 when I approached the officials to get my degree. The degrees are never awarded in the same year and often take around two years to come,”–Dhritiman Ray as reported by The Hindustan Times
Ray had approached DU in 2019 for getting his degree. But the University provided him with the special certificate. The certificate acted as a provisional replacement for the degree. However, there was no conferral date (the date on which degree is conferred) written on the special certificate, owing to which the College rejected his application. Ray has now moved to the Delhi High Court to get his problem resolved.
In its reply to the Delhi High Court regarding the delay in degree conferral, the Delhi University ( DU) cited the following reasons.
“The contract with the printer engaged by Delhi University came to an end and the same had to be re-tendered. Owing to the lockdown situation, there were very few bids received for the tender which delayed the process. However, the tender for the printer is being finalized shortly”Delhi University as reported by The Hindustan Times
The University cited two principal reasons for the delay- lack of quality paper and end of printing contract. However, the Court was quick to slam the University. It said that both the reasons weren’t credible enough to be justified. The Court added that these matters concerning students’ future should be taken seriously. The Court has also asked DU to streamline its degree conferral process.
DU Beat spoke to Ms Abha Dev Habib, Treasurer, Delhi University Teachers’ Association ( DUTA) regarding the issue.
“Printing degrees should be a routine matter for any University. It is only unfortunate to see that a premier University is giving such an excuse to the student and the Court. The fact that the student had to go to the Court for such an issue shows a weak redressal system within the University. It is also an unfortunate situation that while students and employees have to spend money from their pockets on litigations, the Universe spends public money in against its own students and employees. Just as all I-cards are available online, the degree should be available to students through the University site. That a “special paper” is needed for a degree, should be a thing of past”–Abha Dev Habib, Treasurer, DUTA
Mr Vinay Gupta, Dean (Exams), Delhi University, stated that owing to delayed data from colleges around December 2019, further delay in degrees was caused. Moreover, after the pandemic outbreak, matters got slowed down. He added that the tender for printing press will be hopefully renewed by 31st July 2020 and degree will be conferred soon.
“On the face of it, the whole “we ran out of quality paper and hence couldn’t print your degree” seems absurd at the least, not to mention highly irresponsible. Expiration of the tender with the printer might look like a genuine reason but what can certainly not be excused is the time that the varsity takes in furnishing a degree for their students. The degrees take a couple of years to come by but the time frame is out of a reasonable temporal window. To hear that a person might lose out on their chance for higher education because of Delhi University’s lax management is rather appalling.”Anonymous, 3rd year DU student
DU is now directed to file an affidavit with the Delhi High Court within four weeks. Dhritiman is still waiting for his degree. But hoping that the issue gets resolved soon, he is now aiming to study at the University of Glasgow, Scotland.
Feature Image Credits: DU Beat Archives