On Monday, the Standing Committee of the Academic Council of the Delhi University (DU) decided to take admissions under the ECA quota. The admissions will be done based on self-attested certificates of the students.
Earlier, DU had decided to scrap the admissions under the ECA quota, except for the NCC and NSS. Later, the decision was reconsidered by the University. The latest move is objected by several teachers. They said that the students should not be admitted only on the basis of certificates.
The University, in an earlier notification, had said that trials for ECA and sports quota will not be held because of the coronavirus pandemic. Therefore, the University had decided to hold the admission under sports quota based on government-approved certificates.
There is a non-availability of such certificates for the categories of ECA like theater, dance, music, etc. Therefore, a decision was taken to scrap the admissions under this quota altogether.
This move of DU had attracted criticisms by renowned dancers like Sonal Mansingh and Geeta Chandran who demanded that the admissions under the ECA quota should be reinstated. The Vice- President of India, Venkaiah Naidu had also urged the DU administration to continue with ECA admissions.
The University administration said on July 11, that it would be prudent to revisit the partial exclusion of ECA.
A meeting of the Sub-Committee for Sports and ECA was held on July 17. It was decided that the certificate marks (25) will be clubbed with the performance trial marks (75). The aspirants will be evaluated based on self-attested copies of the certificates.
Depending on various factors, aspirants will be marked out of 100. These factors will be whether the students have received training and for how long, whether these students have participated in competitions, and at what level.
A green signal was given to the decision by the Admission Committee on July 18 and by the Standing Committee on Monday.
Arun Attree, a member of the Standing Committee, said that the proposal was brought by the sub-committee on admissions to the standing committee. The proposal was to begin admissions under ECA category based on certificates, by excluding trials.
He said that he had strongly objected to the proposal, as in no way, was it possible to authenticate the credibility of ECA certificates, unlike the sports certificates. There is no government-approved institution that issues such certificates and it would be unjust to genuine candidates.
He also said that he had emphasized on online trials, but lack of experts and infrastructure was pleaded by the committee members, for doing away with the online trials.
Several criticisms have been drawn from several teacher groups. The DU V-C was written to by two EC and four Ac members from Academics for Action & Development. They wrote that dependency on the certificates cannot be a sound basis of objective evaluation of the artistic skills which are performance-based. A trial should be conducted for these disciplines.
The V-C has also been written to by the Indian National Teachers’ Congress that the authenticity of uploaded ECA certificates is suspected by the Committee. On the other hand, the Committee has recommended the admission under the ECA based on certificates. The faculty of Music and Fine Arts should conduct ECA admissions.