Cut-offs for disabled at St Stephen’s see a jump of more than 40%

  • Shradha Chettri, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Jun 18, 2015 20:02 IST

Kushagra Srivastava, a student with hearing impairment, has secured 91.25% in his Class 12 boards but couldn't qualify for St Stephen'sCollege.

Kushagra would have easily qualified with his marks had he applied last year or the year before.

But the cut-off for History for people with disability at St Stephen's has seen a jump of almost 42% this year, making it almost impossible for students like Kushagra to get in.

The rise in cut-offs at St Stephen's is not only limited to History this year. Almost every subject has seen its cut-off jump up by nearly 30-40% for people with disability.

"We have closely observed the cut-off of the previous years and were hopeful that my son will qualify to St Stephen's. But now he stands no chance. Even though he has qualified for Kings College in UK, he wanted to study in Stephen's only," said Rajnish Kumar, Kushagra's father.

Kushagra has passed from The Shri Ram School and wanted to pursue either English or History honours at Stephen's.

Last year, for students applying under the people with disability category, the cut-off for English was 8%2. This year, the cut-off has shot up to 94.5%. Similarly for History (Hons), the cut-off has risen from 50.75 to 92.75%.

The jump in cut-off marks for students with disability, however, is limited to general category students.

For Christian students with disability, the change is not that significant. For instance, in English, the rise in cut-off for Christian candidates with disability has just gone up by 0.5%, from 82 in 2014 to 82.5 this year.

Principal Valson Thampu said the rise was because of increasing number of applicants in this category.

"There are two aspects to this. One is the increasing number of applicants and the other is that people in this category have been doing much better due to technological advancement and empowerment," said Thampu.

This year, the college has received 29,672 applications for its 410 seats in 11 courses. A senior teacher at St Stephen's College, said that the cut-offs for general category students was illogical and discriminatory.

"For economics honours, a commerce student studies English, maths, economics and other subjects. Similarly, a science student studies the same subjects with either physics or chemistry and a humanities student also studies the same three subject with either history and political science. So why should a commerce student have higher percentage cut-off for admissions," said a teacher.

Thampu, however, said that there is no such discrimination.

"In past few years, the difference in evaluation across streams is disappearing so there is no disadvantage. From our experience we have seen that in economics honours, science students fare better than others. These were taken into account before the cut-offs," said Thampu.

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