Agitation for OBC Reservation at Delhi University

[Statement Forwarded by Anoop Patel, AIBSF]

A group of students and teachers of Delhi University staged a protest demonstration in front of Ramjas College. A delegation met the Principal, Ramjas College and put forward their demands. After staging the demonstration the group marched to the office of the Dean of Students' Welfare (Delhi University) and continued the protest. They forced the Dean of Students' Welfare to come out and listen to the demands. But the issues that were raised were not resolved and therefore we have decided to continue with the agitation and take it to the higher authorities, namely the Vice-Chancellor of the University and to the Ministry of Human Resources Development.

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Although DU follows the cut off system for admission for General and OBC, Ramjas College has rendered the cut off for OBC by restricting their admission to the number of sanctioned strength. Therefore, the General Category admission goes well above the sanctioned strength, but the OBC students are denied seats even if they meet the cut off. 27% reservation for OBC has thus been rendered meaningless in Ramjas. The following demands were put forward:

1. Follow the same procedure for General and OBC candidates and stop the discriminatory process for OBC immediately.

2. Give admission to all the candidates OBC candidates who met the cut off but were denied admission.

3. Take disciplinary action against the person responsible for putting OBC candidates through the hardship.

4. Stop the procedure of following the outdated OBC list. Use the latest version of the Central list that is available on the website of the National Commission for Backward Classes.

SC/ST candidates are subject to discrimination as they are often forced to take courses or colleges that were not of their higher preference. They are denied a chance of moving from one course or college to another even if they meet the cut off in subsequent lists. General category students enjoy the benefit of free mobility.

A group of about 40 SC/ST students who could not collect or cancel their admission slips in time due to reasons beyond their control are now being denied a chance to take admission in DU even though they meet the cut off. A General Category candidate will not have this predicament as they are free to apply anywhere in any of the admission lists that are published, whereas SC/ST candidates are at the mercy of the seat that is allocated to them by the centralized admission system.

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The following demands were put forward in a joint petition:

1. Accommodate SC/ST students in the forthcoming lists who have been rejected from the admission process due to administration's failure to provide adequate time for collection of admission slips and cancellation without denying the admission of SC/ST students eligible for admission as per the forthcoming lists.

2. Admission for all Reserved Category students must be based on actual intake of students in unreserved seats and not on the basis of pre-allotted seats.

3. Detailed Prospectus in Hindi and English with maps and college location must be provided to every SC/ST student during the time of issuing forms.

4. Extend the office hours for SC/ST admissions from the present 3 hours (10am to 1pm) to 8 hours (9am to 5pm)

The following organizations participated in the demonstration:

Academic Forum for Social Justice

All India Backward Students' Forum

Democratic Students Union

Janhit Abhiyan

Krantikari Yuva Sanghatana

OBC Employees Association (Delhi University)

Social Justice Alliance

Students' Islamic Organization

United Dalit Students' Forum.

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