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IIM ‘late cut’ leaves admission hopefuls in the lurch

Euphoria turned into despair for MBA aspirant Vijay Joshi (name changed) in the span of 12 hours this weekend, with IIM Calcutta suddenly pruning a list of 700 selected students by almost 100.

Vijay, a Mumbai boy, sensed something was amiss the moment he heard about the “first list” being revised. He went online immediately to check the IIM Calcutta website, only to discover that he was among the unlucky few whose selection had been put “on hold”.

The same website had flashed the message “Congratulations, you have been selected” across the 22-year-old’s computer screen when he keyed in his registration number and date of birth less than 12 hours earlier on Friday.

“He was over the moon in the morning and a shattered young man by evening. I don’t know how to console him,” Vijay’s father Dheeraj told Metro from Mumbai on Sunday.

Saibal Chattopadhyay, the dean of programme initiatives on the Joka campus, confirmed that the original list was pruned after being put up on the website.

“The original list was drawn up taking into account the likelihood of some students with multiple offers from IIMs opting out, apart from the usual dropouts. But as it turned out, there are very few students with multiple offers this time and the dropout rate could be lower than previous years. We were compelled to revise the list,” he said.

Subrata Mitra, the chairman of admissions, declined to say how many students were dropped from the original 700 but sources estimated that the list became shorter by over 100 names after revision.

All selected students are supposed to receive their offer letters by April 20 and confirm by May 1 whether they will take admission. Vijay and the rest of those whose selection has been put on hold will get a second chance only if a few among the top 600 drop out. There are another 100 students on the published waitlist.

The institute has already increased the number of seats in its flagship management programme from 318 in 2008 to 408 this year to accommodate the increase in the quota for Other Backward Classes (OBC).

Officials said the available infrastructure was inadequate to increase the number of seats by a few more. “We have already stretched our resources to the maximum for a 30 per cent increase in seats because of more OBC reservation. We could not have accommodated even 10 more students,” a professor said.

The father of a student who had made the cut but was dropped from the revised list compared his son’s plight to that of an offloaded airline passenger. “Airlines are known for overbooking but we don’t expect an institute of the stature of an IIM to do it,” he said.


  • Seats 2009-2011: 408
  • Successful candidates on revised list: 600 (approx)
  • Students put on hold: 100 (approx)
  • Students on waiting list: 100 (approx)
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