Confusion over quota mars Ignou BEd counselling

Ineligible aspirants stage protest

The BEd admission counselling being conducted by the Indira Gandhi National Open University (Ignou) was marred by conflict over reservation provision here on Friday.

Aspirants protested on the Ignou Bangalore regional centre premises in Jayanagar 8th Block after nearly 100 of them were turned away for not qualifying for admissions.
Based on a national-level entrance exam, Ignou is conducting admission counselling for two-year BEd course exclusively for in-service teachers.

The exam was conducted about three months ago and the counselling process for admissions began on Thursday. While on the first day, the open university conducted counselling for the SCs, STs and differently-abled candidates, on Friday the admission process was meant for OBC non-creamy layer candidates. The protest began when a section of candidates belonging to the Lingayat community was told that they do not qualify for reservation.

Speaking to Deccan Herald, Gurumurthy, husband of one of the applicants, said several candidates belonging to the community had turned up at the venue seeking seats under OBC category.

“As per regulations of the State government, they qualify for reservation under 3B category. However, they were told at the venue that the community did not figure in the Central list for reservation.”

Following the protests, the counselling process was delayed by a few hours. With no other choice, candidates belonging to the community had to return home without a seat. They wanted to know from officials why their names were announced in the counselling list if they were not eligible for admissions under the quota.

M S Parthasarathy, Ignou regional director, Bangalore, said: “Several candidates had not submitted their caste certificates along with their applications. Hence an opportunity was given to all of them to appear for the counselling. We are checking their credentials during the counselling.”

The Ignou brochure and the application forms mention that the admissions will be done based on the Central list of reservation.

Some teachers do not seem to have read the regulations properly. One can cross verify this list on the National Commission for Backward Classes website, www.ncbc.nic.in, he added.

The competition for seats for Ignou gets tougher as the seats offered by Karnataka State Open University (KSOU) are far fewer. While there are 500 seats in the Karnataka State Open University (KSOU), there are 1,100 seats offered by Ignou, for its eleven recognised centres in Karnataka. There are 100 seats each in all these institutions.

To ensure that the candidates who were turned away on Friday did not lose out a year, Ignou has decided to offer them seats in general merit (GM) category. The cut-off for GM seats is 57 marks in the entrance exam. Candidates falling in this bracket will be given an opportunity to participate in the GM counselling to be held on Saturday, Parthasarathy added.

Those who have failed to secure this score will have an option to take part in the second round of counselling, that will be announced based on the seats remaining after the first round.

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