The Telegraph
Tuesday , June 3 , 2014
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Chaos greets DU aspirants

Students and parents wait for admission forms at the Daulat Ram College in Delhi on Monday. Picture by Yasir Iqbal

New Delhi, June 2: Delhi University’s admission process got off to a chaotic start today with a scramble for forms and a website crash distressing applicants.

Around 54,000 undergraduate seats in 70 colleges are up for grabs but, with over 50,000 students having secured over 90 per cent in the CBSE alone, the cut-offs are expected to hit new highs.

All seats are for DU’s four-year undergraduate programmes (FYUP), introduced last year amid protests from sections of students and teachers.

Today, students complained that they had to run helter-skelter for the common optical mark recognition (OMR) — computer-readable — forms on sale at 18 centres on the varsity’s north and south campuses.

The forms are meant for all colleges, except St. Stephen’s and Jesus & Mary College, which have their own admission processes and only accept online forms.

DU officials said around 32,460 forms were sold today. This is slightly less than the previous year’s first-day figure of 40,000 but is expected to go up over the next few weeks. The deadline for form submission is June 16. The first cut-off list will be out on June 24.

Internet offered little comfort to the harried, with barely 10 per cent of the 17,000 who logged on to the university site able to complete the process as the portal stalled under heavy traffic — for the third consecutive year since the Web option was made available. Malay Neerav, DU’s deputy dean (students' welfare), blamed the wobble on heavy traffic.

Another hitch was a last-minute change that requires applicants to choose only the subjects of choice, not the college, as had been the case so far.

The new system was announced only last month, leaving many applicants in a dilemma about the proper way to fill forms.

Another area of confusion was which subjects to include from the Class XII board results in the “best of four” calculation, to which the DU cut-offs will be linked.

“We studied hard get good marks so we could secure a seat here. But the admission process is so complicated. There are long, long queues for forms,” said Aastha Srivastava, an aspirant.

Protests against the four-year courses continued. A Left-backed students’ union held demonstrations today. A DU teachers’ delegation had met Union HRD minister Smriti Irani last week and pressed for the withdrawal of the courses.