Sandeep Samal


A seminar on ‘Urban Naxalism- The Invisible Enemy’ was conducted in  Hansraj College on 24th August by ‘Group of Intellectuals and Academicians (GIA)’. The seminar was attended by  500 people in a packed auditorium.  It had filmmaker Vivek Agnihotri as the chief speaker, ABVP national organising secretary Sunil Ambedkar as chief guest, and Supreme Court advocate Monika Arora as keynote speaker.

The seminar started with a choir singing ‘Vande Mataram’ and the ceremonial lamp lighting by the guests. A representative of GIA highlighted the motto and the achievements of GIA since its inception.

Mr. Abhijit Majumdar, the editor of, demanded that textbooks should start calling Mao as a mass murderer. He stressed that there should be revamping of education system and reclamation of space to set the right kind of narratives. He criticized Dr. GN Saibaba for his links with Maoists.

Advocate Monica Arora, the convener of GIA was the next speaker in the lineup. She condemned the events at the JNU campus on the night of 9th February. She discussed the poster of the same night. “Ek zor lagana hai, inko poora nikaalne keliye… Kerala, media aur JNU mein hi toh baaki hain (We need to use force to throw them out…Rest are in Kerala, media, and JNU),” she said.

“Whatever happened in JNU in 2016 was problematic but one good thing happened — it exposed people with communist ideology hidden within the film industry, journalism, and universities. They had been working as sleeper cells” said Mr. Sunil Ambekar.

Dr. A K Bhagi, President of the National Democratic Teachers Front in DU highlighted the cases where Naxalism has been included in the curriculum as social movements.

“Islamist fundamentalist forces in the west and the communist forces in the east are trying to break India. After Independence, the minds of Indians have been colonised strategically”, said the chief speaker at the event, Mr. Agnihotri. He categorically highlighted that the idea of an empowered woman has been largely skewed by the left intelligentsia. He pressed that India will emerge as a superpower despite several challenges.

One thing that didn’t go down well with the students was the act of not taking questions at the end of the seminar. Students were not given a chance to engage with the panelists.

Mrs. Arora, who is the convenor of GIA, while talking to the DU Beat correspondent, highlighted the need of organising such seminars. She informed that GIA wishes to emerge as a questioning sane voice in a charged socio-political atmosphere.

The seminar drew its curtain with National Anthem being sung by the audience together which was followed by high tea.

Sandeep Samal
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The University of Delhi offers a plethora of courses for the under-graduation program. Some of them allow you to change colleges each semester, study agro-chemicals, and other fun stuff like forensic sciences.  Here’s a list of some of the unique courses on offer.

The University of Delhi epitomises quality education at the college level for students in our country. And this quality is not confined to reputed colleges and a sought-after faculty. The university offers an under-graduation degree in a variety of courses which cover diverse fields of study.
Many of these courses might not even be heard about. Yes, DU is much more than a university bragging about high cut-offs and mainstream courses. Here’s a list of a few courses that we thought were unique and might not be very known among the audiences:

B.A. Honours (Humanities & Social Sciences): According to the official website, “B.A. Honours (Humanities & Social Sciences) seeks to enable students to draw upon the resources, talent, and expertise available in different colleges. Instead of prescribing a fixed set of courses, this course presents an opportunity to the student to design his/her own degree. Inter and trans-disciplinarily will be encouraged for a holistic understanding of Humanities and Social Sciences.”

There are 40 seats in total (reservation applicable as per university rules) and admission is sought through a written MCQ based entrance test conducted across centers in India.

Its offered in Cluster Innovation Centre

B.Tech. (Information Technology and Mathematical Innovation):  The Cluster Innovation Centre, University of Delhi, offers this four-year B.Tech course which is designed to inculcate an innovation mindset as part of the curriculum and pedagogy. An aggregate of 60% marks in four subjects (including Mathematics) in the qualifying examination is regarded as the qualifying criteria for admission to this course.

The admission is based on an Entrance test of Multiple Choice Question (MCQ) format.

Its offered in Cluster Innovation Centre


B. Sc. Applied Life Sciences with Agro-Chemical & Pest Management: A niche course dedicated towards the field of agricultural industry, it is a three-year program including core subjects like Biology of Life Forms, Herbicides, and Applied Entomology and so on. Students can opt for a career in microbiology, biotechnology, and so on.

Colleges that offer the course: Swami Shradhhanand College, and Acharya Narendra Dev College.

B. Sc. (Hons) Anthropology: As the name suggests, this course introduces a student to the various kinds of anthropologies along with a deep understanding of the subject. Some of the core papers include Introduction to Social Anthropology, Human Genetics, and Human Ecology. This course enables a student to pursue a career in the field of teaching, research, and also provides with the option of becoming a part of organisations such as UNESCO and UNICEF.

Colleges that offer the course: Hansraj College

B.Sc. (H) Food Technology: An integration of diverse subjects and learning of skills, this course is challengingly interesting. The core papers range from Introduction to Biology, Chemistry to Foundations of Food & Nutrition, and even Project Management and Entrepreneurship. The career options available are as diverse as the subject, where one can become a Food Technologist, Biochemist, Analytical Chemist, and even Research Scientists.

Colleges that offer the course: Institute of Home Economics, Lady Irwin College, and Bhaskaracharya College.

B.Sc. (Honors) Forensic Science: Focused on national security and safety of citizens, this program is formulated to understand the hi-tech methods involved in crimes and achieve advancements to combat the same. Some of the core papers include Crime and Society, Forensic Biology, and Forensic Anthropology. A student holding qualifications in this subject can find himself/herself recruited as Investigative Officers, Forensic Scientist, and Handwriting Expert.

Colleges that offer the course: SGTB Khalsa College

Feature Image Credits: Times Higher Education

Karan Singhania
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Sandeep Samal
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In an attempt to reform higher education, the central Government today announced a complete overhaul of the apex higher education regulator- University Grants Commission (UGC), repeal of the UGC Act, 1951 to adopt a fresh legislation to set up the Higher Education Commission of India (HECI).

The new Higher Education Commission of India is meant to focus only on the academic part of the universities. Finances would be under the direct jurisdiction of the ministry, according to the draft. 

The HECI Act, 2018 is expected to be pitched in the Parliament in the upcoming monsoon session. The Ministry of Human Resource Development will be uploading the draft of the act on its website to be vetted by the public and for inviting feedback. 

Dr.Rajib Ray, the President of Delhi University Teachers’ Association was very  critical about the overhaul of the UGC and told DU Beat that, “It is very unclear that how this step will address the need of higher education in a better way.” He informed DU Beat that DUTA will be holding a meeting on 3rd July to deliberate further on the draft. He raised his concerns over the absence of representation of SC/ST/OBC/PwD/women in the twelve membered commission.

Dr. Nandita Narain of DUTA in a conversation with DU Beat correspondent alleged that the aim of overhauling UGC is an attempt to corporatise education sector.

In a conversation with DU Beat, Mr. Saket Bahuguna, the media convener of ABVP said that “This draft aims to bring reforms in the field of higher education. The ABVP will discuss the draft and propose the recommendations to the MHRD, once it is out for public feedback”

Educationists, stakeholders, and others can furnish their comments and suggestions by July 7, 2018, until 5 pm.

Feature Image Credits: The Indian Express.

Sandeep Samal

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A former worker of the Indian National Congress’ student wing purportedly sent a letter to the media containing WhatsApp conversations between Fairoz Khan and others. Sexual harassment charges have been levied against the National President of NSUI, (National Students’ Union of India). Khan has categorically rejected all the charges labeling them as ‘politically motivated’ and ‘baseless’.

The woman, who is an office bearer and former probationary national office bearer from Chhattisgarh, has alleged that NSUI President Fairoz Khan has been sexually harassing young women in lieu of political appointments. The allegations came to light late Sunday night after rumoured WhatsApp conversations between another woman and Fairoz, were released to the media.

NSUI has taken suo motu cognizance of sexual harassment allegations made against its National President Fairoz Khan.

Through a telephonic conversation, Ruchi Gupta, National In charge of NSUI informed DU Beat that they haven’t received any formal complaint from the girl yet. “NSUI has set up a AICC committee to investigate the matter. Deepender Hooda is a part of the investigating committee.”

“The NSUI and Rahul Gandhi should take cognizance of this serious allegation but Fairoz is openly attending NSUI meetings,” told Saket Bahugana, the National Media Convener of ABVP to DU Beat.

Kawalpreet Kaur, DU AISA head, reckoned that the matter is absolutely shameful and the inquiry can’t be fair unless the accused is not suspended from his post.

The report will be subsequently updated with the further flow of information on the matter.


Sandeep Samal
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Practical classes are supposed to help the students relate to and execute the matter they acquired while reading theory in textbooks. This helps in attaching an additional dimension of reality to the theoretical fraction of studies. Other than just helping the students acquire the knowledge better, the drill of practicals should be able to invoke interest in the students’ mind. The practical classes’ help students get intimated with the application of the subject, to experience it in real-time. Understanding of a subject cannot always be expanded within the four walls of a classroom. Theoretical knowledge is of no use unless it is tried and tested in the field. Hence, practicals aim to ensure complete impartation of knowledge in a wholesome manner. 

However, in the contemporary times, the methodology of conducting practical classes is redundant. The rigorous method of conducting these non-theory classes is stealing the charm of the practice. Overloading the students with numerous experiments within a semester’s time frame adds to the burden of the curriculum. Students do not put much effort to understand the experiment, but just focus on updating the practical files and getting it verified by the supervisor. Students get reeled in the process, sometimes without gaining as much as an ounce of the practical knowledge. This renders the whole system of ‘learning by doing’ monotonous.  

Sometimes there is inconsistency and lag between the theoretical knowledge and experiment in the students’ mind. There are instances when a student is absolutely clueless about the experiment and the governing principle underlying it. Performing an experiment without the knowledge of the basics and background makes it counterproductive. It is crucial to have a solid understanding of concepts before attempting an experiment.

In a lot of government funded institutes spread across the country, labs are not well equipped to perform an experiment meticulously. Apparatus and gadgets do not work precisely. This creates a major hurdle in performing the experiment. 

There are labs which are being maintained and supervised by under-skilled lab technicians. They fail to guide the students properly which creates a lot of chaos and confusion.

Due to the synergistic impact of the above-mentioned factors, practical exams are a major headache for the students concerned. They have only increasingly become rigorous and problematic. The practical exams are progressively becoming like theory exams with no restricted real elements. They have not been imparting knowledge; rather these practicals are overburdening students. Practical exams should provide respite from the monotonous lectures; however, status quo reflects a different story. These exams should be designed in a way that inculcates teamwork among students. The University should see that experiments promote self-learning and students essentially gain from such an exercise.

Feature Image Credits: Daily Bouncer

Sandeep Samal

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VC Lawns, which lie in the heart of  North Campus, University of Delhi have glorious stories associated with it. Besides the historical backdrop, the building and the associated lawns have an immense cultural significance which makes them even more special.

Established back in 1902, Viceregal Lodge, also known as VC office is a landmark in the University of Delhi (DU). A conglomerate of departments and colleges are found in its vicinity. The VC Lawns have pertinent cultural and historical associations. The VC Lawns has managed to carve a niche in the leaves of modern history.

The  Lawns are an archive of history as the arcades of that building are the repository of the time when the Northern Ridge in Delhi served as the British cantonment during the early 20th century. It has also served as a residential area for the imperial rulers. The University of Delhi was established in the year 1922 and subsequently, the estate was handed over to the University in 1933. Presently, it serves as the University of Delhi’s Vice-Chancellor’s office.

The rich historical backdrop of the VC Office and lawns further glorifies it. The building has housed five Viceroys of India. It has also witnessed the historical Gandhi-Irwin Pact. The hidden chambers of the building have served as the dungeons where Shaheed Bhagat Singh was once confined.  Eminent personalities like Jawaharlal Nehru and Mahatma Gandhi have walked its corridors. The royal architecture of the Viceregal Lodge stands as a testimony to the colonial rule in India. It got renovated and transfigured during the tenure of the former Vice-Chancellor, Deepak Nayyar.

The associated lawns with the office are very popular and lie in the heart of the North Campus. They are easily accessible owing to the several entry gates and are lush with greenery. The lawns give students a space to pursue recreational activities. They are accessible all times for students. The lawns come alive during the evening as people of all age groups take leisurely strolls and enjoy the peace and calm that they offer. A stretch of green grass scattered with palm trees and covered with flowers, in the heart of the Varsity is a sight to behold. It allows people to not only connect with nature but also with their friends and families in a beautiful way. Societies and student-run organisations often use the lawns to hold meetings and to have practises and discussions. The significance of VC Lawns in the life of a student in North Campus is immense. The VC office and lawns will continue to be a definitively influential space in the Varsity for a long, long time.

Now when you are intimated with the facts revolving around the VC office and lawn, take a moment to sense pride to breathe the air around the historic building.

Feature Image Credits – The Hindu

Sandeep Samal

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Contrary to popular opinion that India is the land of merrymaking and celebrations, there has been a significant dip in India’s ranking in the World Happiness Report over the past few years. We examine the reasons behind this at the university level.

The World Happiness Report is an annual publication by the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) which has been impaneled with the charge of calculating the rankings of national happiness and analysing the data from various perspectives.

The 2018 World Happiness report was released on 14th March. Finland was crowned as the happiest country out of the 156 countries that were surveyed. India’s ranking has dipped further in Global Happiness Index, in comparison to previous years. The parameters used to evaluate the levels of happiness were GDP, per capita income, social support, healthy life expectancy, social freedom, generosity, and absence of corruption. India’s ranking was far behind from other neighboring countries such as Pakistan (75th), Nepal (101st), and Bangladesh (115th), to name a few.

As we know that university spaces are simulations of the real world, it is prudent to examine the happiness index from the perspective of colleges and universities in India.

Financial inequality and sharp economic disparity among the population has long haunted India. People living in equal societies are happier. Similarly, students hail from different strata of financial strength. There is sharp incongruity on financial lines among students. This might evoke a sense of insecurity among students.

Home to a population of 1.3 billion people and growing, an entry in premier education institutions necessitates vicious competition among students, thereby evoking acute stress. Meeting high expectations from society and family becomes difficult which renders students helplessness. A majority of the students don’t feel satisfied with their course or college.

Lack of proper infrastructure in the field of education is also a biting factor when compared to counterparts in the foreign countries. Students don’t get the required machinery in the country to hone their skills before they go out seeking jobs.

Campus spaces have become increasingly unsafe for women and for the students who have little offbeat opinion. Cases of harassment are on rise. India can never be happy if 50% of the population is always on an alert or alarmed and don’t feel secure. All of these make way for a public perception that women’s safety has not ameliorated since the indignation following the Nirbhaya case in 2012.

Despite making progressive strides on the health front, the mental health has been left largely unaddressed. The government spends 0.06 per cent of its total health spending on mental care. The same situation corresponds to our universities and colleges; students facing mental health issues don’t find the proper affordable treatment for it.

One might argue that the sample size for the concerned survey was very small when compared to a 1.3 billion population, but visibly things are not at right place and the entire country has been painted grim. The NDA government needs to consider this report as an indicator of the youth’s falling trust for the current government.

Feature Image Credits: Hindustan Times

Sandeep Samal

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The University of Delhi held its 60th Flower Show on Friday, 23rd February, at the lawns of Mughal Garden near the Vice Chancellor’s Office. The theme of the flower show this year was, ‘Floral Diversity in India’.

The inauguration of the 60th Flower Show started at 12 noon, wherein Vice-Chancellor of the University of Delhi, Professor Yogesh Tyagi and distinguished members of the Garden Committee were present. Post the inauguration, Professor Tyagi went around the exhibition of exquisite flowers as he interacted with students.

When the DU Beat correspondent mentioned that she had never witnessed such a flower show before, Professor Tyagi remarked gleefully, “It’s my second year too.” On being asked about the motive of flower shows, Professor S. Babbar, the Chairman of the Garden Committee commented, “Look around you. You see everybody looking happy. Nature destresses you. Basically, the aim is to bring nature closer to us.” Replying to queries from the correspondent, Professor Arun Pandey, the Secretary of the Garden Committee, observed, “This year, we have wide-ranging participation with nearly 1500 entries. Our special attraction is the entry from Jammu and Kashmir.”

Aakash Gupta, a postgraduate student from Department of Geology, told DU Beat that, “I got to know a lot about the biodiversity from this event. I am having a good time seeking aesthetic pleasure from this ceremony.”

Street playgroups from Hansraj College, Dyal Singh College, and Kalindi College put forth their plays before the prize distribution ceremony started.
At 3 p.m., the prize distribution ceremony commenced. A total of 74 prize cups, notably the Kirori Mal College Cup, the University Architects Cup, and Department of Botany Cup, donated by different colleges and institutes were awarded to the best flower presentations. Miranda House won the first prize. Gwyer Hall and Zakir Hussain College also bagged a lot of prizes too.
The flower show started at 12 noon and remained open till 5 p.m.


Feature Image Credits: P.V. Purnima for DU Beat
Vaibhavi Sharma Pathak
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Sandeep Samal
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The Faculty of Law, University of Delhi, has removed 43 and added 87 new faculty members to its more-than-one-decade overdue recruitment drive. The permanent recruitment drive at the University of Delhi has sparked a controversy as many ad hoc teachers who served the University for several years have alleged discrepancies in the selection procedure. The Delhi University Teachers Association (DUTA) came to the rescue of the ad-hoc teachers by holding a university-wide strike today and marched while sloganeering from the Faculty of Arts to the Vice Chancellor Office. The march was followed by a public meeting.

Immediate recruitment and absorption of all the long-serving ad-hoc teachers was the prime demand. The selection procedure did not account for the University Grants Commission (UGC) recommended ’50/30/20′ formula where the first 50 points are for academic and research, 30 for domain knowledge, teaching skills and teaching experience, and 20 for the interview. The recruitment process results have not been declared yet. Teachers allege lack of transparency in the permanent recruitment drive.

Prof. Anil Kumar Vishwakarma who got sacked from Faculty of Law after the recruitment drive told DU Beat that, “There is no clarity in the ’50/30/20′ formula ordained by the UGC. If they had followed these then those who are teaching at the faculty for almost a decade should have been considered. The ad-hoc members continue to teach at the university after clearing internal interviews every six months. I, myself have cleared that interview five times.”

Dr. Rajib Ray, the DUTA President, told DU Beat that, “The senior teachers who have been serving the university for a long time should be considered and there should be complete transparency in the ’50/30/20′ rule coined by the UGC. All the information should be put in the public domain.”

The teachers are demanding an independent probe. The sacked teachers have resorted to the legal discourse.


Feature Image Credits: DU Beat

Sandeep Samal

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Students in colleges, when fall sick, rarely bother to consult a doctor. They procrastinate fixing an appointment with a licensed doctor. They keep enduring the pain anticipating to heal soon. If not, they resort to self-medication. The use of medications without proper medical consultation concerning indication, dosage, and duration of treatment is referred to as self-medication. In most sickness chapters; self-medication is the first option which makes it a common practice among students.

Students are alarmingly unaware of the hazards of self-medication and its grave implications. It can wreak havoc in the body. Self-medication even to counter minor ailments can incur medical complications. A large number of potential drugs such as painkillers, anti-allergies, sedatives, antibiotics, antacids, and vitamins are sold without consultation with a licensed doctor. Self-medication with over the counter medicines can further exacerbate the ailment.

Intake of drugs prescribed by a pharmacist who doesn’t hold a degree in medicine is also a form of self-medication. There are cases where the recommendation of drugs by a doctor for one member is applied on to another in the family without consulting the doctor, simply because the symptoms are analogous. The assumption that the infection is similar can prove fatal.

If the intake of drugs is not monitored by a medical expert’s supervision, then the dosages can rewire the body to malfunction. Self-medication does not tell the patient about the dosage of the drug, the strength of it, its composition, how the drug needs to be taken, and its side-effects or reactions if any. These drugs can harmfully react with other drugs which can prove deadly in adverse cases.

The government should make extra efforts to revamp the entire system of dissemination of drugs, at least around the universities. To ensure the safety of students, authorities should be really vigilant while drug dispensation. Students themselves should be aware of the repercussions of self-medication and refrain from indulging in the hazardous practice.


Feature Image Credits: PharmEasy

Sandeep Samal
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