Central varsities, IITs fail to fill up OBC quota seats

Central varsities, IITs fail to fill up OBC quota seats

More than half of the centrally-funded universities and colleges have not yet been able to fill up all the seats marked for the other backward classes (OBC) students, notwithstanding the Centre’s argument that an “effective implementation” of 27 per cent OBC quota in higher educational institutions began only in 2008.

According to government data, the HNB Garhwal University in Uttarkhand and the Central University of Kashmir appear to be the worst performers in implementing the reservation policy as they ended up admitting just 5.24 per cent and 4.40 per cent OBC students respectively in 2014-15.

While the Rajiv Gandhi University admitted just 7 per cent OBC students in 2014-15, the Central University of Jammu provided reservation to only 16.30 per cent students under OBC category, Central University of Tripura 16.34 per cent, Central University of Tamil Nadu 19.19 per cent, Central University of Punjab 20.13 per cent and Vishwa Bharati University in West Bengal 22.45 per cent.

The status of implementation of the OBC quota in admissions remained equally distressing at about 32 of the total 75 centrally-funded technical institutions which included three of the seven older Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) where representation OBC students in under graduate engineering programmes did not go beyond 25 per cent.

While the IIT Kanpur admitted only 18.90 per cent students under OBC quota, the IIT Delhi enrolled 21.52 per cent students under the reserved category and IIT-Bombay 24.70 per cent.

IIT Roorkee, which kicked up a major controversy after expelling as many as 73 students for their under-performance amid reports that majority of these students were admitted under reserved categories.

Half of the total 30 NITs could not fill all the seats reserved for the OBC candidates under 27 per cent quota in various undergraduate engineering programmes with the enrolment records for the academic year 2014-15 showing the NIT Agartala admitting only 15.03 per cent students under the category.

Percentage of the OBC students at Indian Institute of science and Research (IISERs) ranged from 14.87 to 26.86 per cent, except the IISER-Bhopal where 28.31 per cent students were enrolled under the quota in 2014-15. The Union Ministry for Human Resource Development recently drew a rap from a parliamentary standing committee as it cited “unavailability of suitable candidates” as a reason to justify the failure of higher educational institutions funded by the Centre.

“The approach of the universities and other technical institutions has been rather lax in providing due representation to OBC students,” it noted in its report tabled in Parliament during the winter session.

The panel, headed by BJP MP Rajen Gohain, also did not approve the ministry’s argument that successive litigations challenging constitutional validity of the Central Educational Institutions (Reservation in Admission) Act, 2006, delayed the effective implementation of the law, which was passed by Parliament on January 3, 2007 and later amended in 2012.
 

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