CUET delay pushes back session by months
Over a dozen central universities will start first-year undergraduate classes only in November, instead of the usual July-August, because of the delayed results of the maiden Common University Entrance Test-Undergraduate (CUET-UG).
Higher education regulator University Grants Commission has compiled the admission schedules of the 45 central universities, which will enrol undergraduate students on the basis of their CUET-UG scores.
The National Testing Agency started the exam as late as July and glitches pushed its conclusion till the end of August. The results were declared last week.
Delhi University, which attracts students from across the country, is yet to declare when it can start first-year undergraduate classes.
Such information, according to the UGC’s note, is also awaited from Jawaharlal Nehru University, which offers undergraduate courses in language subjects; the English and Foreign Languages University, Hyderabad; Dr Harisingh Gour University, Sagar, Madhya Pradesh; Shri Lal Bahadur Shastri National Sanskrit University, Delhi; Mizoram University and Sikkim University.
According to the data compiled by the regulator, the central universities where classes for the fresh batch will start in November are: Visva-Bharati; Hyderabad University; Guru Ghasidas University, Bilaspur, Chhattisgarh; Allahabad University; Assam University, Silchar; Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar University, Lucknow; North Eastern Hill University, Shillong; Central Sanskrit University, Delhi; Central University of Andhra Pradesh; Mahatma Gandhi Central University, Motihari, Bihar; Central University of Kashmir; Central University of Tamil Nadu; and Indira Gandhi National Tribal University, Amarkantak, Madhya Pradesh.
The remaining central universities plan to start classes in October.
Till last year, each university conducted its own selection process for undergraduate students. This year, the education ministry forced all the central universities to admit students through the maiden CUET-UG.
The regulator had announced that the computer-based national entrance exam would be held in the first and second week of July. But it started on July 15 and ended on August 30, with serial technical glitches necessitating postponements and re-testing.
Prateek Arsh, who appeared in one of his CUET-UG papers on a revised date after cancellation of the original date in the first week of August, said the exam was not properly planned.
“The (conduct of the) exam was reckless. The exam, which was supposed to help our batch, actually worsened the anxiety and stress,” he said.
“This being the first year of the CUET, some errors were bound to happen. But repeated errors reduce trust in the authority that conducts exams which decide the future of many students.”
Arsh, who lives in Dwarka in southwest Delhi, had to take his test in Noida, about 50km away.
He had a few suggestions for the exam authorities: “Communication with the students can be better. Often, helpline numbers were busy and emails brought no replies. The centres should not be too far from the candidates’ homes. Technical glitches and server issues should be sorted out in advance.”