By : Kaunain Sheriff M
Delhi University’s move to introduce a 50 per cent quota for MA Economics applicants who completed their bachelors degree from the university has left non-DU students concerned. The move means that competition for the course, which is also highly sought after by students who don’t have an economics background, gets much tougher.
According to admission rules and procedures for 2014-15, 50 per cent of the seats for MA Economics will be earmarked for direct admission for BA Economics (Honours) graduates from DU. It will be subject to eligibility conditions and in order of merit. The “remaining” 50 per cent seats will be filled through an entrance exam. While DU students can get direct admissions through the 50 per cent reservation, they can also appear for the entrance exam.
“We are reverting to the system we had 25 years ago when DU graduates could get direct admission to postgraduate courses. Sometimes candidates, who have performed well throughout the undergraduate programme, are not able to deliver on the day of the entrance exam. This system will do justice to such students,” professor Aditya Bhattacharjea, Head of Department of Economics, Delhi School of Economics (DSE), said.
Bhattacharjea said the decision was probably taken because 75 per cent of the applicants to the MA programme were usually from Delhi University. Also, he said, the syllabus for the entrance test is based on DU undergraduate curriculum.
However, graduates from other universities felt that the quota would give an “undue advantage” to DU students. “The entrance exam is based on the curriculum taught at DU, so it is already easy for them. The reservation just makes it simpler to get the course. This move is biased,” Dikshita, an economics graduate from St Xavier’s College, Mumbai, said.
DSE attracts students from across the country, including a significant number from Engineering and Science backgrounds. Many feel that the reservation will lower the prospects for such students.
“DSE is like the IIT and the IIM for economics. There should be a level-playing field to get admission there,” Naveesha G, an engineering graduate, who will sit for the MA entrance this year, said.
Nishant Mehra, a DSE alumnus who also runs online portal ecopoint.in to mentor aspirants, said, “Students should focus on their preparation. Reservations should not act as deterrent for serious candidates”. The entrance exam will be conducted on June 28.