Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has written to Union Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal seeking to abolish the Section 5(2) Delhi University Act, 1922 so that new colleges and universities can be opened in Delhi to provide quality higher education.
Kejriwal said that the Delhi University Act made during the British era states that a new college needs to be affiliated with Delhi University.
The chief minister said that the Delhi government is ready to open new colleges and universities in Delhi as students are facing a tough time getting enrolled in colleges because of high cut-off marks. "With cut-offs touching 100 per cent what will happen to students who secure 60, 70, 80, 90, 95 per cent?. He also observed that every year, Delhi has around 2,50,000 students passing out from school, but around 1,25,000 of them manage to get admission in Delhi-based colleges. What will happen to the remaining 1,25,000," he asked ? Kejriwal said, "Students trying to get admission in colleges are facing trouble, given the 100 per cent cut-offs. Students below that mark too have the right to quality higher education. High cut-offs are not the fault of students, it’s our fault. This is happening because of the lack of universities and colleges in Delhi in comparison to the ever-rising number of students."
Delhi is the capital of the nation, it should have been as par with the increasing number of students however, there is a stark imbalance in the ratio of the number of universities to the number of students, he said.
Kejriwal on Friday said, "I am hopeful that the Central government will definitely ponder over this and will definitely alter this act to suit the need of the hour. I believe the stress factor is escalating in students because of this system. If there will be cut-offs as high as 100 per cent, where will students go? This calls for a step to take in this direction to for once and for all end this for the sake of our students’ future."
"If we only talk about Delhi, every year 2.5 lakhs students pass 12th class. However, only 1.25 lakh students can secure admission in Delhi colleges. It means two students are fighting for one seat leading to a cut-throat competition. Leaving behind the other 1.25 lakh students without any resources. This means that colleges in Delhi can only accommodate 50 per cent of students. Where will the other 50 per cent go?" he asked.
Kejriwal said, "There is a need to establish more universities and colleges to solve this problem. The Delhi Government is ready to invest, however, there is a legal impediment being faced." "Delhi University already has 91 affiliated colleges and has, since the last 30 years not opened a new college as it has already exceeded its
capacity. Because of this very reason as stated in this Act under Section 5(2), no new affiliating university or college can be set up. It was amended in 1998 and allowed IP University to do affiliation. IP University was launched to offer professional courses only and not regular courses like BA, BSc. But, Now IP also has 127 affiliated colleges, which too, has surpassed its capacity," he added.