Delhi University Sports Council’s arbitrary decision to cancel the process of listwise reallocation of colleges has drawn considerable flak. Pleas against the measure, however, have fallen on deaf ears. Let us explore how the move signals a demise of merit.
Following a drop of sports seats by nearly 528 applicants, DU Sports Council released a third list on 4th January, 2021, to fill the emergent vacancies as soon as possible. Great haste indeed makes great waste. Accompanying the list is an arbitrary decision on part of the council to deny admission to students who had backed out in the first round. The conventional reallocation process thus stands cancelled without any prior intimation. Most of these students had hoped to avail admissions to better courses and colleges in the subsequent lists. The sudden decision is a mark of apathy and unaccountability on part of the body, and signals a demise of merit in more ways than one.
Nowhere did the initial guidelines comment on whether or not should a student await the release of subsequent lists before taking admission. Students were urged to get temporary hold of seats.
The reallocation procedure continues to be followed in non-sports admissions. Its removal by DUSC alone is perturbing to say the least. Organizational decisions are expected to be well-charted out and firm. DUSC, however, seems to be running on momentary impulses. DU Beat contacted sports students directly impacted by this. Shavi Bhatnagar, a Badminton player from Indore, remarked upon how the University officials had assured her in no uncertain terms to hold onto a seat while further lists were being drafted:
We visited the DU council office…where officials suggested that I should get admission as I waited for the second round…that DU always gives students an option to upgrade college/course according to their choice in newer lists. I have learnt that this procedure has been well established (all these years) at DU, even in non-sports admissions.– Shavi Bhatnagar
While DUSC had attributed the change to keeping away those who had previously failed to make good on confirmation of their admissions, one wonders perhaps if the students were actually managing the best out of the limited information provided to them by the University, and if it is in fact the Council that is failing them and their dreams.
Now I was shocked to see a rule debarring a student from second round admission process if they took admission in the first round. This rule was inserted in the original guidelines.– Shavi Bhatnagar
The decision of denying admissions in such a manner allows a student who achieved a lower rank in the Sports Quota, but hadn’t applied in the first list, to get a college of preference over someone with a higher rank who dropped a seat after looking at the lists that followed. This is blatant disregard of merit and goes against the University’s spirit of giving due consideration to talent. The rule curbs admissions from a backdate: by the time of its approval, first-round admissions were already closed. It has bought the transparency of admission process at DU under scrutiny.
We, the ones who took admission in the first merit list, were debarred from getting into college of our higher preference even if the seats were vacant. We, the students applying in the first merit list, were not given any instructions on whether admission in one college will debar us (from switching over).– Shavi Bhatnagar
The Council’s response has been deeply apathetic and dissatisfactory. While its initial mails, too, assured the students that they would be able to reapply once the second list was out, later correspondence simply urges the students to follow the new guidelines. Even highly detailed grievances by students have hardly evoked any clear answer on part of the Council. To preserve institutional integrity, DUSC must revoke the new order.
Feature Image Credits: DU Beat Archives