Sixty-five per cent of students in the city’s prestigious St Stephen’s College are women. Hence, to “fix this skewed sex ratio”, a proposal has been moved to reserve 40% of seats for men.
Principal Valson Thampu sprung this surprise on his faculty at a meeting on Friday. The decision, he said, had been taken by the supreme council. The faculty immediately shot it down."The principal called a meeting in the morning to discuss the proposal, which was unanimously rejected. The supreme council does not have the power to make academic decisions," said faculty member Karen Gabriel.
But her colleagues said the proposal had been shot down only for this year and “it will be back on the table next year”.
“This is a retrograde step. This is a space where women are flourishing and we should encourage it, not restrain it,” said Nandita Narain, another staff member.
Thampu couldn’t be contacted despite repeated attempts.
The supreme council is responsible for maintaining the religious and moral character of the institution as a Christian college. Headed by the bishop of the Church of North India in Delhi, Church members, the diocesan board of education and the principal, it has no jurisdiction over administrative or academic matters.
Teachers said another reason for the proposal was a decision taken way back in 1975 that said 75% of students in the college should be men.