Delhi College of Arts and Commerce introduced three new courses without a permit or additionalfund sanction from UGC, leaving the future of 75 students who took admissions, at stake.
Seventy-Five freshers from DCAC of the University of Delhi are facing severe crises as the courses in which they enrolled were introduced by the college without prior permission or sanction of funds from the University Grants Commission. The three courses namely BA(H) Hindi, BSc(H) Computer Science, and BSc(H) Mathematics had 32, 23 and 20 admissions respectively.
On May 24, 2017, Rajeev Chopra the then principal of the college had requested funds from the UGC to start these 3 courses in the college. In its reply in August 2018, the UGC had stated that the college could start the courses with the existing teaching and non-teaching staff as they are unwilling to bear additional costs for the same.
On September 7, 2020, Anuradha Chopra, current principal of the college had sent a request to the UGC via email regarding the same. Despite having received no response from the UGC, the college administration had opened portals for admission in these new departments and took 75 students in total.
Srikant Pandey, an associate professor from the Political Science department of the college, filed a complaint to the UGC that the college had illegally diverted posts to start the new courses. In the email sent on October 9, 2020, the professor mentioned that the college had 34 sanctioned posts for assistant professors under the OBC expansion scheme to restore the teacher-taught ratio.
In the light of the above mentioned objective facts, I would request your good office to look into the matter and take necessary action that the stated policy of affirmative action does not suffer due to irrational and illegal decisions of the person concerned.-Prof. Srikant Pandey, in his letter to the UGC, as reported by the Times of India
The professor added that although the first tranche of funds issued from the UGC has been utilized for the functioning of several departments, the second tranche of funds was allocated to the opening of new courses in the college, thereby diluting the teacher-taught ratio. As a result, this has not only hampered the functioning of the college departments but has also broken university norms.
The UGC had clearly expressed their unwillingness to sanction funds for opening new courses in the college and had strictly informed the principal to utilize the funds to dilute the teacher workload due to an increase in intake of students, in the OBC category according to the latest directive by the university.
…Therefore, these posts should not be considered for starting new courses. Hence, UGC regrets its inability to approve the proposal of the college for starting of new courses with the posts sanctioned under the second tranche of OBC expansion scheme.-Shalini, UGC Education Officer, as reported by the Times of India
In response to the allegations and issues at hand, the principal responded that the courses were approved by the University and that an undertaking was given by her predecessor Rajeev Chopra that the approved courses will be started in DCAC. In her defense, she also added that the college shall not utilize the funds from UGC towards the establishment of new courses in the college.
Everything narrows down to the risk of the future of the 75 applicants who had taken admission under these courses. It was reported that the students were unaware that the college had started the course this year only and that they would have changed their options if they were aware of it. The unprecedented turn of the event not only induces risk in their future but also poses the threat of losing one year. As the answers remain uncertain, the authorities must take necessary action towards it quickly and compensate the students in the best way possible.
Feature Image Credits: Indianeducation.net