Demand for minority quota seats in junior colleges go down

Published on Aug 13, 2022 07:54 PM IST

For years, several minority colleges in the city have attracted the best of the lot but over the years, this trend seems to be fading

In the 2021-22 academic year, only 34,676 seats were filled in the minority quota--leaving nearly 65% vacant. (HT File)
In the 2021-22 academic year, only 34,676 seats were filled in the minority quota--leaving nearly 65% vacant. (HT File)

Mumbai For years, several minority colleges in the city have attracted the best of the lot but over the years, this trend seems to be fading.

Admissions for first year junior college (FYJC) courses are currently underway and figures shared by the office of the deputy director of education (DyDE) show nearly 87% seats unclaimed this year. Many minority colleges have already released the second, and in some cases, third minority quota merit list, still of the 99,935 seats available under the quota across junior colleges in MMR, only 19,075 seats are taken as of August 13.

In the 2021-22 academic year, only 34,676 seats were filled in the minority quota--leaving nearly 65% vacant.

“For the past few years, we’ve been surrendering several vacant seats from the minority quota by the end of admissions to convert those into open category seats. I believe for the Sindhi minority itself, there are too many options, so students pick colleges closer to home and avoid travelling long distances,” said Pooja Ramchandani, principal, HR College, Churchgate.

Admissions to FYJC seats were delayed by a few weeks this year as the DyDE waited for class 10 results of all school education boards to be released before starting the process. After the last of the results were announced in the last week of August, registrations to FYJC admissions commenced and the first merit list was announced on August 3.

Since July 27, several colleges have started releasing merit lists for in-house as well as minority quotas.

“The demand for minority quota keeps dipping every year, because students tend to opt for specific bifocal subjects, which they can only claim in the open category admissions. So many students confirm admissions in minority quota until they find a seat in the open category, then withdraw admissions. This has been the trend for the past few years,” said the principal of another prominent minority college.

Since 2016, students applying for admissions under the in-house and minority quotas will be subjected to an external audit in order to ensure that despite quotas, colleges are admitting students on the basis of merit only. Many colleges feel this added procedure has been discouraging many students from applying to minority colleges.

“Another new feature added this year is that students applying under linguistic minority have to first upload their relevant documents on a government portal for verification, following which they can confirm admissions in minority quotas. We realised this year that several students have not managed to understand this process, and therefore missed out on admissions within the deadline,” said Neha Jagtiani, principal of RD National College, Bandra. A popular destination for those from Sindhi minority, National College, too has witnessed a dip in applications and admissions this year.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Shreya Bhandary is a Special Correspondent covering higher education for Hindustan Times, Mumbai. Her work revolves around finding loopholes in the current education system and highlighting the good and the bad in higher education institutes in and around Mumbai.

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