patel chest


How the inexpensive readings market of DU becomes a student’s saviour, from course textbooks to previous years’ papers. 

After watching hundreds of videos on “a day in the Life of a Delhi University Student”, when the freshers finally enter the campus, realizing the necessity to survive such an academically rigorous structure takes its most miniature form – the study material. Kamala Nagar, Delhi School of Economics, Patel Chest, Satya Niketan, or Tilak Nagar – something that they all share in common apart from their bustling food corners and hundreds of students crowding in lines is that all of these places and many more, provide the much-needed gear up for every student panic-stricken with approaching exams. We are talking about the readings! 

Notes, readings and study materials form the crux of studying in an institution like DU, where the curriculum prescribes textbooks and references of numerous national and international writers. This is where such complexes step in and act as the “friend indeed” to thousands of students, providing all reading material at heavily slashed prices. Some of these work factorially and produce appropriate study material, handpicking readings from various authors and bringing statistics, factual information, research papers, archives, essays, and even photocopied versions of expensive branded textbooks – all into a thick bound spiral. 

Opting for History as a Generic Elective means reading essays from about ten historians in a single unit. Instead of looking for them all over the internet, it is extremely comfortable to purchase the readings from DSE (Delhi School of Economics) at a price much more affordable than what costs for actually buying the prescribed textbooks.

said Janhavi, a second-year student from Ramjas College.  

Delhi School of Economics has transformed into a hub catering to all the students completely dependent on notes and reading material because of their low attendance in classes due to ECA or internships. From Commerce to Economics and from History to Political Science, you can get neatly catalogued readings for every course at the cheapest possible rate. The photocopy lane at Patel Chest consists of dedicated stores providing readings specific to colleges like SRCC or St. Stephen’s, as well as course-specific bindings. 

Another such place that has garnered a monopoly over students’ textbooks, reference books, as well as competitive manuals, is Bookland – now a major textbooks brand in the Kamala Nagar market. The bookshop has a partnership with Shivdas and Worldview, two leading publishing companies dominating the market of textbooks prescribed under the University of Delhi’s curriculum as well as the previous years’ question papers for the majority of the courses the varsity offers, supporting a large DU-centric audience. Worldview publishers have entirely monopolized the varsity’s English literature syllabi and keep publishing texts with supportive critical essays authored by academic scholars and professors proficient in the area, along with detailed background information about each of them. Be it William Shakespeare’s Macbeth or Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, they have got you covered. With hawk eyes on any changes in the curriculum, the company makes sure to provide the amended material from the subsequent academic session. Shivdas’ previous years’ question papers cater to nearly all the courses and are bought by students preparing for their exams looking for glimpses of expected questions along with their solutions. 

While the offline readings market makes everything affordable and readily available, the Undergraduate study material of the varsity’s School of Open Learning is a priced possession not just for the students enrolled at the SOL, but also those pursuing the offered courses from other regular colleges. Prepared by qualified academicians of the SOL, online notes have proved to be a boon for students of Commerce, Political Science, BA Programme, Economics and English, spanning and serving everything the students need to study in just one PDF file. Clearly, it is a thesaurus since it is available to access free of cost and has become so reliable amongst the students that a day when the SOL website went dysfunctional sent chills down the spines of the stakeholders.

Thus, a discussion of DU’s reading market leads us to a common ground of similarity to its quarters – the affordability that it dispenses which makes it easier for students to manage their academic expenses along with their usual budget. While we get readings and question papers at a cheaper price, it is evident and rather important to interrogate the ethical immorality that much of this market substrates upon. Neglecting copyright regulations and editing out research credits from the material highlights that quality education gained from the readings of renowned authors is sold at the stake of honesty and ethical obligations. This leads us to juggle with the idea of how much plagiarism and research denouncement are negotiable for the sake of affordable learning. What becomes important for university education – is it the benefit of the student body for cheaper resources or crediting the work of academics, critics, and scholars who have prepared it after years of assessment? 


Image credits: So City

Read also: Five Tips to Sneak in Extra Time for Reading 

Aryan Vats

[email protected] 

Off the beat foodie trail


1. What: Patel Chest bhelpuri

Where: Patel Chest main gate, north campus

A small over laden cart, beside a bald, fat gentleman who whips up the most delicious puffed rice potpourri. Very quaint, I’d call it.

He is well known in the area, and ask any bhelpuri connieussier, they will swear by the Patel chest guy. The recipe is a well guarded secret. The puffed rice is conjured up well with spicy sauces and flavorings, which make this bhelpuri the most unique of all varieties. The bhelpuri can be customized according to your tastes, which is a major add on. The toppings are different too in this case; there is crisp groundnut and fresh coriander, so that makes it all the more eatable.

2. What: Chhole Kulche

Where: right outside Hans Raj main gate.

His chole kulche are definitely understated. The kulche are soft and tender, while his chole are well steamed and nice. All he takes is a mere 10 rupees for a scrumptious meal.

3. What: Momos

Where: A) outside Venkateswara College, Satya Niketan

B) Momos at Bungalow road, Kamla Nagar

Stuffed dumplings couldn’t come cheaper. For Rs 10 a plate, which incidentally includes 5 momos, it’s a total rip off. With hot chilly sauce as accompaniment, this is something every DUzen should experience at least once.

4. What: Chole Bhature

Where: “Chacha’s” opposite Hans Raj hostel gate, Kamla Nagar.

Although I suspect they are a franchisee of the original Chacha’s, their chole bhature nevertheless are up to Chacha’s high standards. They could even be recommended over the original, as there is just enough place to stand and eat, unlike Chacha’s shop. At the same price per plate, this one sure is a must try.