Long route for RU certificate

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  • Published 8.05.12

More than 300,000 alumni of over a dozen Jamshedpur colleges, who graduated before 2009 when their respective cradles were affiliated to Ranchi University (RU), are in a bizarre certificate dilemma.

Since the varsity has had no branch office in the steel city ever since Kolhan University was formed in August 2009, former students seeking their graduation credentials are required to travel all the way to the state capital, 130km from Jamshedpur, just to procure an application form worth Rs 5.

Though Chaibasa-based Kolhan University has a city office, it technically cannot help arrange forms or issue certificates because RU had conferred the degrees till 2009.

Only after the mandatory form is filled up and submitted, RU promises to deliver certificates to the college concerned after a month or so. This cumbersome process is hindering higher studies for many former students, while jeopardising job prospects of others.

“I have been running from one department (of my college) to another for the past one week, but haven’t been able to procure an application form for my certificate. Administrative wing officials here are asking me to go all the way to Ranchi to buy the form, which doesn’t make sense. Besides, my family is quite against me travelling alone. So, I don’t know whether I will be able to apply for my BEd this year or not,” said Anjana Sharma, a student of The Graduate School College for Women’s 2008 batch.

Karim City College alumnus Yogesh Kumar, who graduated in 2006, said his future was at stake because of this certificate dilemma.

“I urgently need my credentials to retain a new job offered in Calcutta. It had been a norm with RU to issue graduation certificates after three years. So, I had not sought it earlier, but now I need it desperately. Asking us to go to Ranchi for a form worth Rs 5 is ridiculous. We will end up spending more than Rs 200 as bus fare, let alone waste of time and energy. Moreover, there is no written guarantee that we will receive the certificate smooth and swift even after submitting the form. You know how things work in government cradles,” Kumar said.

Several lower-rung college employees are, meanwhile, cashing in on this predicament of former students. Some of them frequently visit Ranchi for work, buy application forms in bulk and sell it in Jamshedpur at more than 10 times the cost. “I bought an application form, which is actually worth Rs 5, for Rs 80,” said an alumni of Jamshedpur Co-operative College on the condition of anonymity.

He said he fathomed that buying the form from a college official would still be cheaper than travelling all the way to the capital and back.

Ranchi University officials said though they had been organising convocations to award degrees and certificates for the past two years, the backlog remained huge. They admitted that there was no online option and former students needed to come to Ranchi to apply for certificates.

“The certificate distribution process has been streamlined (through convocation) of late, but there is heavy backlog because 100,000-odd students pass out every year. It is a time-taking process and students will have to wait,” said V.P. Sharan, pro-vice chancellor, RU.

Colleges in Jamshedpur begged to differ.

“It is really difficult for alumni, particularly girls, to travel to Ranchi for a form. The best thing to do will be to send the documents to respective colleges without the formality of application,” said Shukla Mahanty, the principal of Jamshedpur Women’s College, which is now autonomous.

Shakuntala Pathak, principal, Graduate School College for Women, conceded that the cradle didn’t keep application forms for certificates as the university had bifurcated. “However, we generally request our office staff who travel to Ranchi to get forms. But, that is not possible every time and there are hundreds of students who need forms,” she said.