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OMR form still to win students’ trust

Even five years after its introduction the common pre-admission form, now sold as the OMR (Optical Mark Reader) form, it hasn’t yet been able to gain the complete trust of all applicants, reports Ritika Chopra.
Hindustan Times | By Ritika Chopra, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JUN 11, 2008 04:36 PM IST

The Delhi University (DU) introduced the centralised pre-admission forms in 2003 in an attempt to simplify the admission process. With this initiative the inconvenience of waiting in different queues in separate colleges became a thing of the past. Well, at least that is what the DU authorities had hoped to achieve.

It turns out that even five years after its introduction the common pre-admission form — initially introduced as the ICR or Intelligent Character Reader form and now sold as the OMR (Optical Mark Reader) form — hasn’t yet been able to gain the complete trust of all applicants. Though almost all colleges accept applications that come via the common form, many students choose to seek admission to selected institutions both through the OMR as well as the individual college forms.

Harshma Chaudhury, a candidate from Muzaffnagar with an aggregate of 91 per cent, is one among many who feel a bit hesitant applying to colleges only through the OMR form. “I guess colleges prefer students who’ve filled in their forms to ones who have applied through the common one,” said Chaudhury, who while buying the centralised form at Kirori Mal College decided to pick up KMC’s individual form as well.

However, it’s not just the outstation students who have doubts about the common application process. Students from Delhi, too, are in the same boat. Inspite of having attended DU’s Open Day at the South Campus, Cheistha Kochhar insists on applying to a few institutions both through the OMR and the college form.

“Apart from filling up the common form, I will also seek admission to Hindu College, Shri Ram College of Commerce and Hansraj College separately. What if the OMR forms are misplaced or my information is not communicated correctly to the respective colleges? Filling the individual form at the same will definitely dilute the risk,” she said.

Gurpreet Singh Tuteja, deputy dean students’ welfare, University of Delhi, dismisses doubts and allegations regarding reliability. “Students do this either because of psychological satisfaction or because they are confused by a few clauses But it is not true that the application does not reach the colleges properly,” he explained.

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