Jat students applying for admission at Panjab University and its affiliated colleges, though eligible for seats reserved for the “other backward classes” (OBC) category, will not be able to do so any longer as PU is not a central varsity.
Last December the central government had notified Jats would be included for reservation under the OBC quota. Clarifying this, PU dean of university instruction AK Bhandhari said: “We’ve been receiving re presentations to maintain the OBC quota but there is nothing the varsity can do. Technically we’re not eligible to have this quota. As the Jats have been included in the same quota, they can’t be given seats in the reserved category.”
“It’s being said if PU begins offering admissions on the basis of the OBC quota, it’ll have to follow other norms applicable to a central university. However, if PU is accorded this status it will mean no more interference by a state government and grants will be given by the central government. It is due to politics of the Punjab government that PU was not given the central varsity status,” said a senior PU official.
In the 2008 academic session, PU filled up 7 per cent of the OBC quota and also received a grant of ` 5 crore from the central government. It was decided then that there would be a 27 per cent OBC quota that would be implemented in three phases and, likewise, the number of seats would be increased by 54 per cent.
However, the Punjab state gover nment had intervened later, saying PU could not implement such a quota since it was not a central varsity. Following this the grant was withdrawn from the varsity and it was excluded from the list of educational institutes eligible to offer the quota.