Vani Vivek


Art of Living founder, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar’s recent comment on Malala Yousafzai being undeserving of the Nobel Peace prize has caused quite a stir. DU Beat spoke to a young peacebuilder from Delhi University, Oman Agarwal, about his achievements, plans and his take on this issue.

“Both Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and Ms. Yousafzai are massive figures in the world of humanitarian work. While Guruji has been able to advocate simple living and understanding different perspectives to lead a life of harmony, Malala on the other hand has been extremely courageous in the face of regressive and violent regime. I believe Guruji’s rejection to be honoured with the Nobel Peace prize is because he treats his work like a duty, and Malala’s acceptance of the prize has helped shed a lot of light on the issue of education and inspire others to take action. A thousand salutes to them both,” says Omang Agarwal, a 19 year old Political Science student from Shaheed Bhagat Singh College, DU hailing from Darjeeling.

Like many students his age, Omang holds strong opinions on issues like gender parity and social equality. However, unlike most students his age who are content with expressing displeasure on social media, Omang has gone a few steps further. He is the founder of Youth for Peace International, a first of its kind youth organisation in India, aimed at building peace with the tools of education, gender equality and inclusive development, and he also recently been appointed as the Asia Coordinator for CYPAN, Commonwealth Youth Peace Ambassadors Network.

When asked about how it all began for him, he takes us back to school in his hometown, Darjeeling. “I had the opportunity to lead a winter camp, where we helped 4000 children from nearby villages by providing shelter in our school campus for three months, along with mid – day meals, educational and co – curricular activities, and scholarships. I was able to contribute towards helping rebuild Nepal after the earthquake with a joint project with Rotary International, Interact, Rotary and Rotaract Clubs called ‘HumAct’, a recognised Success Story at the Whole Humanitarian Summit Consultation by United Nations Major Group for Children and Youth. I haven’t looked back since.” Omang has also been a part of the organising team for the HeForShe campaign in DU, including an event organised in association with NSS, Shri Ram College of Commerce last year.

On his role as Asia coordinator of CYPAN, Omang says, “My aim is to build a network of Youth Peacebuilding organisations in Pan Commonwealth Asian Countries (India,  Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Singapore, Malaysia, Maldives and Brunei). We will take up training to build the capacity of the youth to create new and responsive approaches to conflicts and issues, relating to it in their regions and beyond it. Forced displacement (refugee crisis), reconciliation of crisis areas post wars and humanitarian action are going to be my focal points of working.”

His advice for youngsters looking to bring about change is to research on the issues and the efforts made to resolve them in the past, joining hands with like-minded organisations / individuals to come up with probable solutions and efficient plans of action, and being fearlessly perseverant. His organisation, Youth for Peace International (YFPI), which has already conducted a number of campaigns and is now partnering with UNHRC India, will begin recruitments in July. Mentorship talks (jointly for CYPAN and YFPI along with Rotary International Action Group on Peace) for people looking to participate in peacebuilding efforts will be conducted on the 19th and 25th of May in Delhi and one will be held online on 29th May. Interested students may register here: . “These workshops will help students earn summer internships research, advocacy, project building and implementing with national and international agencies, governmental and non governmental agencies,” Omang says, adding, “Interested students can check our page for announcements or contact me personally over Facebook or LinkedIn. DUites can directly find me on Shaheed Bhagat Singh College campus for the next two years!”

Students interested in the Mentorship talks may register here.

Feature Image: Facebook page of Youth for Peace International

Vani Vivek

[email protected]

Delhi University and its administration have been through a couple of topsy-turvy years, resulting in each of the three current batches operating under different programs- the ex- Four Year Undergraduate Program, the Three Year Program, and the Choice Based Credit System. With a new Vice Chancellor in power, the university seems eager to leave behind this mess and enter the next academic session with a clean slate. The buzz is that DU might introduce a ‘phone a friend’ option during exams to help all students pass so that the current lot studying in these mismatched programs graduate as soon as possible.

The university’s eagerness to wash hands off the ex- FYUP batch became apparent when they issued a notification last semester passing every student, even those who hadn’t even filled out examination forms. Speaking exclusively to our correspondent, a senior professor, Ms. Halka Alka said, “We have held many meetings this semester thinking of how to get rid of this batch of guinea pigs. After narrowing it down to allowing either pharre or the phone a friend option, we are leaning towards the latter because the method has been promoted by superstars and DU alumni, Amitabh Bachchan and Shah Rukh Khan on their TV show.”

Time stipulations and a restriction on the number of calls are yet to be announced but as Ms. Halka Alka further divulged, “We want to pass all students, but we can’t make the phone a friend lifeline too easy an option. After all, we strictly condemn cheating!” Like always, the Delhi CM seems to have sniffed out the real scam behind this lifeline option, claiming that the government has colluded with telecom giant UnReliance to make money off the aam students through these phone calls.

Disclaimer : Bazinga is our weekly column of almost believable fake news. You will still have to rely on old methods to pass these examinations (we mean studying, of course)!


Vani Vivek

[email protected]

Farewells are usually like impending exams – you know they’re inevitable and yet they manage to sneak up on you out of nowhere. At DU Beat, farewells are like bittersweet presents – bursting at the seams with memories, experiences, and lessons. For two years, I had helped gift this present to seniors; to be at the receiving end this time feels… weird.

DU Beat has grown exponentially since I joined as a starry-eyed fresher, and I have very proudly grown with it. From about 10,000 likes on Facebook in the summer of 2013, we are at over 2,15,000 today. By covering events live, reporting on relevant issues, and presenting opinions on matters pertinent to the youth, DU Beat has continued to be a source of dependable news for students and faculty alike.

This year, we aimed at letting more voices from the University emerge through polls on DUSU elections, and providing more coverage to off- campus colleges by signing up as media partners for more than 300 events across Delhi University. The organisation itself has grown to a team of 70 students making up the editorial, design, marketing, and human resource departments.

It has been a privilege to have learned from seniors who laid the foundation for DU Beat’s growth and to have led a team of enthusiastic students who will undoubtedly do wonders with this space. Working with a group ready to slog under the June sun to distribute admission- special issues and sacrifice sleep to meet deadlines, my years at DUB have ingrained in me the worth of having a committed team by one’s side.

To be a part of this team that has come to define college life for many of us, send your CVs to [email protected].


Vani Vivek, Editor (2015-2016)


 This year with the organisation completing 10 successful years, the festival was celebrated with more enthusiasm and grandeur. The atmosphere was a blend of intense passion and high emotions, as the top nukkad teams performed amidst an awestruck audience. Jazba stepped away from the mainstream and invited 30 young children from NGO’s like PVR Nest and Sai Sanrachana instead of any famous personalities as the chief guests for the event.
The winners of the competition are as follows: 1st- Institute of Home Economics 2nd- Shivaji College 3rd- Maharaja Agrasen College 
Best Script- Gargi College Best actor- Navdeep (Ramjas College) Best actress- Devika (Gargi College) Aman Saxena Memorial Best Music Award – Maharaja Agrasen College   Press release by Ramanujan College]]>

The debate surrounding freedom of expression in India turned a deeper hue of red when a performance by the dramatics society of Shaheed Rajguru College of Applied Sciences For Women, Mukhauta, at The Great India Place, Noida, was interrupted by the mall authorities on March 1. The play, which was being performed as part of Manthan 2016, the Annual Dramatics festival of Shaheed Sukhdev College of Business Studies, was stopped by the coordinators after being pressurized by mall authorities claiming that the play titled ‘Voices.Choices’ about homosexuality dealt with too sensitive and controversial an issue. Another major concern for the authorities was the image of the mall. Following the rift at Jawarhalal Nehru University, the authorities did not want to get involved in any controversies and put the image in a spot and decided to stop the play being performed in the mall premises.

The students of the dramatics society were understandably gutted after the incident, sharing their thoughts through a Facebook status that said,

[quote] “This is with regret that we announce that our play, ‘Voices.Choices.’ was interrupted midway, by the authorities of GIP Mall during our performance at Manthan Mahotsav.
The coordinators stepped in our ongoing performance, on being pressurized by the authorities and stopped our instrumentalists, for the authorities felt ‘discomfort’ with a ‘sensitive’ issue like homosexuality, which shouldn’t be the subject of a play meant for the commonwealth.
This sort of behaviour was sad rather disappointing, since neither the coordinators nor the hosting venue played along. The reaction simply demonstrates the tendency of the so-called vocal powers to get away from any sort of ‘controversies’.
The incident puts us in a position where we question, for how long will the street plays remain prohibited from the streets ?
However, our message will stay as solid as the wall of numbness in the minds of the intolerant.
It’s a choice of love, and we voice it.” [/quote]

The mall authorities were informed about the performance with details about the play in advance. A report was submitted and the organising committee was granted permission for the event said Chhavi, a member of Manthan 2016 OC. The matter was resolved by compensating the society by arranging another performance by them.
The incident, along with many others happening in the country today, prove that Manthan’s unique concept of reaching out to a large audience with the plays by using roadside stops, NGO’s, malls, parks etc. as venues is only as effective as the society’s perception of “non- controversial” topics.


Photo from the Facebook page of Mukhauta.

Shreya Dubey is a student of Psychology at Daulat Ram College, who got to attend the reputed Stanford Summer School program. Her choice of subject was Affective Science, Neuroscience, and Social Psychology, offered by the Psychology Department of the university. She secured an admirable GPA of 3.9. She talks about her experience at the institute, and of walking in the same places as some of her greatest idols.

Q. What made you choose summer school over an internship? Did you have any notions about studying in the US specifically? In your opinion, what should an Indian student keep in mind before deciding to undertake such a course abroad?

Shreya: Ever since the start of my undergraduate degree at Daulat Ram College, I learnt about the pioneers in the field of psychology and the research carried out by them. I always wanted to know what it’d feel like to be in the same place as these researchers. I believe that internships are important but thorough knowledge of the subject matter is a must before trying it out on the field.

I always felt that the education system in the US is more liberal and research oriented, and it turned out to be true. In addition to better infrastructure and more possibilities, there are also a wide range of subjects to choose from. The curriculum taught is nearly the same but due to abundance of resources, application of this knowledge is better abroad.

I feel that before investing oneself in such a course abroad, one should be passionate about learning. It is a rigorous and well planned course, and creative thinking is encouraged and appreciated. I can say that the learning experience is nothing short of transformative. It changes the person that you are.

Q. How is the education system in USA different from that in India (DU specifically)? Which changes must India begin inculcating immediately?

Shreya: From what I have experienced so far, I think the syllabus is not very different in both countries, especially in psychology. However, the examinations in USA largely involve application of the learnt material. Knowing is not enough, one must understand the concepts and should be able to apply them in real life situations. The availability of better infrastructure allows one to go beyond textbooks. I believe that the same is required in India. Specifically in DU, I feel that free access to WiFi is a basic facility that should be provided. More access to the University research database should be provided, even to undergraduate students. In this era of technology, a more comprehensive web based system will enable us to perform better.

Q. What made you choose Stanford University for your field of study? How would you say your degree compares to similar degrees in other institutes in terms of syllabus/ subject content and future prospects?

Shreya: Oh, it was always a clear-cut choice! The Psychology Department at Stanford is ranked number one in the world and there is no other place I’d rather have been. I chose the courses DU does not offer at the undergraduate level, and it was a wonderful experience. I made friends from all around the world. The degree is an added advantage to my CV as now I have knowledge of some emerging subfields in psychology which are not taught as prominently in India. I now have a global standing in terms of academia and can aim and achieve better things in the future. All that I learnt during the summer was totally worth the investment.

Q. What tasks did you undertake as a member of the marketing team? As the Global Ambassador for Stanford Summer School ’16, how do you plan on best representing the University?

Shreya: Being a part of the Marketing Team was an altogether new experience for an introvert like me. Summer at Stanford is far from mundane – there is so much happening on and off campus that you always find yourself surrounded by things to do. As members of the Marketing Team, we were supposed to cover the various events happening around the campus, ranging from Movie Screenings to Handwriting Analysis Workshops. We also contributed pictures and blog pieces about various weekend trips all around California, be it Napa Valley, San Francisco, or to the Google Headquarters.

My responsibilities as the Stanford Summer Global Ambassador mainly involve promoting this amazing opportunity amongst students of DU. I am currently in touch with Presidents of some colleges and hope to hold small events across the University soon. I believe that it is important that students get to know about these global programs so that they get to experience more than just their own culture and develop a global sense of education.

Q. What was a typical day at campus like? What do students do, when not attending classes? Are extra-curricular activities and sports an active part of the lifestyle of a Stanford student?

Shreya: With a campus spread over 8,000 acres with several libraries, tech lounges, swimming pools, tennis courts, an exclusive shopping mall, football fields, and the memorial church, I think Stanford has something in store for everyone. A typical day at campus involves biking to class, and after class activities vary according to one’s interests. For me, time after class was mainly spent at the library or strolling around the campus. I swam occasionally, and devoted a lot of time to playing basketball.

Activities other than studies are such an integral part that they don’t even use the word- extracurricular. It is pretty much a lifestyle choice and everyone indulges in some thing or the other. Someone plays the cello at the Church, while someone else does Yoga or spends time at the gym – there is just so much to do that you can never get enough.

Q. Being a college student living in one of the most popular destinations in the world, how did you manage your finances apart from the tuition? What did you find yourself spending the most on?

Shreya: Being the foodie that I am, most of my expenses were centered on trying various food items. There are jobs on campus for visiting students. I managed my expenses mainly from participating in research studies happening around the campus. In fact, I think I was able to save around $150.

Q. What was your most profound memory at Stanford University?

Shreya: My most profound memory has to be the day of our Orientation. That day, I looked around myself and realized where I was. I was walking the same corridors as the two most influential people in my life – Dr. Robert Bandura and Dr. Philip Zimbardo. When I reached the site of the infamous Stanford Prison Experiment, I could actually feel a connection to the place and felt a lump in my throat as I felt for my subject as I never had before. I know that those weeks at Stanford will keep me motivated to be my best as a person, and as a scholar. If you have a passion for something, be it anything, Stanford is the place to be.

Q. Please describe the application procedure for the 2016 session and share relevant links.

Shreya: The applications for Summer Session 2016 are now open!

1) Courses Offered: The students have a plethora of courses to choose from. Over 175 courses are offered in 35 departments within the schools of Humanities and Sciences, Earth Sciences, and Engineering.

2) Application Deadlines: You can apply now and save on the application fee. The applications for the early period are now open. Undergraduate and Graduate International students can apply till March in General application period. The Late period admissions extend till April 24, 2016. Online courses are also offered starting this summer quarter.

3) Silicon Valley Innovation Academy: For all the innovative people who want to change the world with their ideas, the SVIA is a golden chance to learn from the best, and have the chance to present ideas to successful entrepreneurs at Stanford Sharks.

More details regarding Summer Session 2016 can be found at

Vani Vivek

[email protected]

DU Beat Questionnaire: DU Alumni at LSE

Prakriti Gupta, MSc Gender, Media and Culture

Hometown: New Delhi

College and course for undergraduate studies: Lady Shri Ram College for Women, BA (H) Journalism


Q.What apprehensions did you face when you decided to move away from home and to a different country? What should an Indian student keep in mind before deciding to undertake a course abroad?


I have lived in Delhi all my life with my parents, I went to school and college here and I have never lived alone. The first thing that stung my parents more than me was ‘how will she manage?’ more so as I am the younger child. The offer was from LSE, so there was no question of not going. First thing that came to mind was that what if I don’t make any friends here and I don’t fit in. Education in India is quite different from UK, after all.

I didn’t have any preconceived notions as such about UK, I did know that I will be living in Central London for a year and that itself was enough to make me happy.

So the most important thing before taking a course abroad is to ask yourself “how do I see myself 5-10 years down the line?” and then think about how will the course help you in achieving that. Studying abroad is expensive and it is really important to be sure of what you want out of that 1-2 year/s that you will be spending there. Everything else can be managed


Q. How is the education system in UK different from that in India (DU specifically)? What changes must India begin inculcating immediately?


I wouldn’t say that education system in India is bad per se as it prepares us to work under pressure and to work hard. What it doesn’t prepare us for is to work consistently, which is extremely important when you are studying abroad. There’s hardly any written examination for my course but every week is important. One has to be consistent in the coursework. Research agendas are taken very seriously here, something that is a little loose in an undergrad in India.

The changes that India should begin with are promoting knowledge-based exams and not one that’s based on how much one can cram in a fortnight. Scoring in India is comparatively easier because of this very reason. Also, incorporating a dissertation/research project in all degrees so that students can have a basic understanding of what it is to conduct a research independently. In my undergrad degree we had this and it has been helping me in my master’s program.


Q. How would you say your degree at LSE compares to similar degrees in other institutes in terms of syllabus/ subject content and future prospects?

I received offers from other universities but the Gender Institute at LSE is the largest research and teaching unit of its kind in Europe, plus LSE is a bigger brand. So it was only logical to go with LSE over other options that I had. Other universities do not share LSE’s love for gender except SOAS, which is perhaps, can be considered. LSE provides us with a wide range of courses to choose from and has the best teaching faculty who make sure that every student is comfortable with what they are doing.


Q.One often hears about how international and diverse LSE is, is it true? If settling in and feeling at home is the easy part at LSE, what is the hardest?

It is absolutely true. LSE is extremely diverse and multicultural. One can here all languages spoken on campus. Like London, it is a mixing pot of cultures. It was a culture shock in reverse for me. There are so many Indians, Pakistanis, Bangladeshis and a few Nepalis too that you will never feel like you are away from home at least as long as you are on campus. Settling in is easy.

The harder part is keeping track of all the events that are going on, you would want to go to all, you will miss the notice of some that you wanted to attend as there are so many things going on all the time. Also keeping pace with the coursework and the required readings for the course. LSE keeps you busy with all of these things.


Q.What is a typical day at campus like? What do students do when not attending classes? Are extracurriculars and sports an active part of the lifestyle of an LSE student?

A typical day at LSE would be running to the campus for a 9AM, grabbing a coffee from the LSE café on the way, attending the classes for the day, then maybe take a short breather with friends either in the café or the bar. Mostly there are many workshops to attend that LSE Careers or the Student well being Centre organizes. Sports, not so much but extra-curriculars are definitely a part of a student’s life at LSE. Music in particular, is taken seriously here.


Q.Being a college student living in one of the most popular destinations in the world, how do you manage your finances apart from college tuition? What do you find yourself spending the most on?

I cook at home, so for me I think I spend the most on travel, which cannot be avoided. Everybody has to spend on travel as it is quite expensive and is something, which is absolutely crucial. You can cut that down by going for a student oyster and a railcard. People who don’t cook are also spending a good amount of money on food. It is always helpful to keep an eye for various discounts, buying an NUS (National Union of Students) card etc.

Q. What has been your most profound memory at LSE so far?

The parties that our departments organize for us in the beginning and at the end of term are always the best and memorable. The friends that I have made here are the ones that I am positive will be for life. Spending time with them, even if in the library, studying is the most profound memory that I have. We are just half way through our course; I hope that we make many more.


Vani Vivek

[email protected]


Read more about our series on DU Alumni at the London School of Economics and Political Science.  


Delhi University evens out the odd strategy: Online poll conducted by DU Beat shows most students in favour of the Delhi Government’s odd- even car policy with suggestions how to tackle pollution more effectively.

We asked students of University of Delhi 6 questions in an online survey to adjudge their assessment of the much debated pollution control strategy implemented by the Delhi Government from 1- 15 January ’16 as a test run. While the policy itself has faced quite a lot of criticism for being inconvenient and ineffective, DU students voted in favour of it as one of the means to achieve a cleaner future. Here’s a closer look at the answers:

1. Has the Odd Even formula affected you?

– About 50% of the respondents said that the odd- even formula did affect them- either because they own and travel by a car or because the metro gets more crowded than usual.

– The other half, about 40%, said that no, they were either exempted under the policy or lived too close to college to be affected by the policy.

– The reasons given by respondents who selected “other” ranged from being able to enjoy clean air and decongested roads to being happy about the increase in frequency of DTC buses to saying that they used the metro like before, but noticed no change in amount of crowd.

Odd Even formula affected you

2. Do you think the Odd-Even strategy is working?

– Despite only about a half of the total survey takers said they were affected by the policy, over 70% believed it to be working as planned.

– Close to 18% said it was causing them great inconvenience and didn’t seem to be making any difference, while the rest said that they haven’t noticed any real change.

Odd-Even strategy is working

3. What alternative mode of transportation do you use when not a car?

– An overwhelming 77% of the respondents said they relied on public transport- Metro, buses, autos.

– Other respondents said they either used their other car or scooty, or carpooled, or got a cab.

– 5% said they’d rather cancel their plans and stay in, and 3 respondents confessed to flouting the rule.

alternative mode of transportation

4. What changes do you think can be introduced to the strategy to make it more effective/less inconvenient?

– The most common answer was the introduction of a more efficient public transport system. Some suggestions that stood out: 1. Increase number and frequency of metro and buses, 2. Regulate tariffs charged by autos/ rickshaws, 3. Ensure better last mile connectivity.

– Another change that people felt was needed was the lack of qualified traffic police force and stricter vehicular pollution check measures and penalties.

– The point of removing exemptions on 2- wheelers and female drivers was made while emphasising the need for implementation of stricter security measures to ensure their safety in public transport.

– Observing regular car- free days even after the 15 days are over seems like a popular option.

– Some respondents felt that it wasn’t the strategy that needed alteration but that the authorities needed to control pollution from factories and trucks.

5. According to you, what else can be done to reduce pollution levels in Delhi, especially by students/your peers?

– Most respondents recommended the adoption of alternate modes of transport- From using carpooling as a way to get to know your neighbours better, to cycling to stay fit.

– A conscious effort and an open mind is what the youth needs to help fix Delhi’s air, the respondents said. Suggestions regarding tree planting and cleanliness drives came up often.

6. Would you support the Odd Even strategy if it were to be extended beyond 15th January?

With about only a quarter saying they wouldn’t want the strategy to extend beyond the 15 days, Delhi University students gave a clear thumbs up to the scheme that has given mixed results over other parts of the world.

Through debate and discussion, the fact that Delhi’s off the chart pollution levels are contributed to by more than a few factors is common knowledge. While banning cars is just one way to go about it, there is scope for a lot more, both, by the authorities and by the individuals. The online survey conducted by DU Beat has presented us with very optimistic results regarding the youth’s understanding of the gravity of the situation and their resolve to make a difference.

extended beyond 15th January

Vani Vivek

[email protected]

Graphics by Aditya Rathore for DU Beat

Department of Business Economics, University of Delhi has opened admission to its flagship course, MBA (Business Economics). The last date to apply is 7th January, 2016. Admissions will be done on the basis of CAT scores. The course, MBA (Business Economics), is an updated programme evolved from the course that Department of Business Economics was earlier known for, a Master’s Program in Business Economics (MBE). MBE combined fundamentals of economic analysis with the practical aspects of business. The entrance exam for MBE has been replaced with CAT scores being the grounds for admission for MBA (BE). In addition to its Masters programme, the department also administers Ph.D. programs in varied business and economic research fields.

USP of MBA (Business Economics)

The 2 year course offers dual specialization in any two of the following: Business Finance, Quantitative Techniques in Business, Marketing and Distribution, and Economics. In addition, the course has a unique Business Analytics edge over its counterparts due its high emphasis on Econometric techniques.

Eligibility Criteria

CAT results will be used for shortlisting candidates. Apart from that, the eligibility criteria states that one should be a graduate (Under 10+2+3/4) in any discipline, with at least 50% marks from the University of Delhi or any other University recognized as equivalent thereto with Maths/Business Maths at class XII level.

Fee Structure

Fees Amount is Rs.12,376.00 at the time of admission for the current year. The application fee is Rs.1,100/- (Rs.600 for SC/ST/PC candidates). Candidates who wish to apply for on-campus hostel accommodation have to apply separately at the hostels (Geetanjali for Women and Aravali and Saramati for Men), after completing admission formalities. Forms / Information etc. in this regard are available at the hostels

Career Opportunities

The 2 year MBA (Business Economics) Programme offers career opportunities in Business Consulting, Business Analytics, Market Research, Brand Management and International Marketing, Supply Chain Management, Insurance and Banking, Equity Research, Risk Management, Environment and Energy Research and Economic Policy.

Placement Highlights

  Department of Business StudiesIn 2015, out of 69 participants of the batch, 65 opted for placements on campus, 4 opted for entrepreneurship and PhD, thus exemplifying a mix of students with entrepreneurial bent of mind to research interests. Email your queries at [email protected] or visit the website. Department of Business Economics]]>