Students aspiring for admission to Delhi University (DU) colleges are turning to political helpdesks in large numbers as they face surge pricing by cyber cafes for filling up the online registration forms.
DU admission, which has gone completely online this time, has left many parents and students confused with an added hassle from cyber cafes which are charging anywhere between Rs.500 and Rs.1,000 for filling each registration form.
“Cyber cafes are demanding Rs.500 for filling the form and an additional charge for scanning the required documents, so I came here (a political help desk) to seek help,” Neha Sharma, a DU aspirant said.
Another aspirant, Vijayshree complained that a cafe in the North Campus missed a few points in her form as people there were in a hurry to attend to the maximum customers, leaving her in a fix.
“My form was not filled properly. I was confused what to do next, so I approached a helpdesk and they filled fresh form for me without any additional charge,” the 18-year-old said.
Congress-affiliated National Students Union of India (NSUI), RSS’s student wing Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad and AAPs Chhatra Yuva Sangharsh Samiti (CYSS) have set up their helpdesks that are not only addressing aspirants’ confusion, filling their forms but also making online payment on their behalf after accepting cash from them.
Eyeing university polls, which are conducted a few weeks after freshers join college, each political helpdesk is trying to woo students by helping them in the ongoing registration process.
ABVP, which bagged all four seats in DU Students Union polls last year, has set up helpdesks with every equipment required to facilitate online registration–from scanners to printers and EDC (card swipe) machine.
CYSS helpdesks are directing parents to cyber cafes which are responsibly filling the forms, while NSUI is addressing doubts and confusion of the students. “ABVP has DUSU office to help the students in registrations. We face problems like power backup, so we are recommending parents to visit certain cafes which are not charging unduly,” Rahul Raj Aryan, CYSS President North Campus said.
While DU, taking cognizance of the problems faced by the aspirants, came up with 24 centres to assist admission seekers with limited resources, they, by and large, remain unaware of these centres.
Gurleen Kaur, who came looking for ABVP helpdesk, said she is unaware of DU centres for admission help. “Where are these centres? I don’t know. These (ABVP) people are also going to recommend to me which colleges should I apply and will also help me calculate my percentage. I think I will get my registration done by them,” she added.
A volunteer at a helpdesk explained that people are not aware of DU centres as those were notified on their website on June 4, days after registration process started.
“A lot of students, who are coming to us, are from poor background or who do not have proper access to internet, how are they going to anticipate opening of such centres when they have been notified so late that too on university website?” he said.
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