The going may become difficult for SC/ST, physically challenged and other reserved category applicants interested in studying at St Stephen’s college this year. After proposing to increase the Christian quota from 40 to 50 per cent this year, the college is contemplating decreasing the SC/ST and others quota by 10 per cent. The 10 per cent share from their share would be given to general category candidates, thus keeping the latter’s number constant at 40 per cent.
"The entire confusion began when the Supreme Council of the college proposed to increase the Christian quota to 50 per cent. This will bring down the general category seats to 30 per cent (from 40 last year) and we were opposed to this," said a faculty member.
"However, the Bishop informed us that he has committed 50 per cent Christian quota to the Church and could not roll it back," the member said. "The governing body has offered to cut down on SC/ST quota and adjust general category in it."
The Democratic Teachers’ Front (DTF) has also come out strongly against the plan to decrease seats for SC/ST candidates. "The college should have stuck to the admission policy that was adopted last year so that the provision of reservation for SC/ST and for Christians with Dalit background which were introduced last year translated into intake of such students," said Shaswati Mazumdar, president, DTF.
There was also utter confusion over the quota policy of the college among students who turned up in huge numbers at St Stephen’s on day one of undergraduate admissions at DU.
"I am a general category student and do not fall under any quota. So I want to know if applying for B.Com. (H) at Stephen’s will be worthwhile," said Aditi Chaturvedi, a commerce student. "There was talk that the general category seats has been reduced to 30 per cent from 40 per cent last year. But nobody is giving any concrete information," Chaturvedi said.
St Stephen’s has been unclear about its admission policy, with the college prospectus not giving any data on quota.