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Fake certificates getting ‘players’ into Delhi University

The DU Sports Council director has said he is aware of the loopholes in the system and will try to incorporate new rules from the next session

education Updated: Sep 16, 2017 07:45 IST
Over 11,000 candidates apply for sports quota seats in Delhi University.
Over 11,000 candidates apply for sports quota seats in Delhi University.(HT Photo/For representation only)

On an average, over 10,000 students apply through sports quota at the Delhi University every year and close to 3000 make the cut for admission to one of its 80 affiliated colleges.

Given the intense competition to get into one of India’s top universities, sports at the university level too should have been right up there. But that is hardly the case.

University sport is in the doldrums and cases of undeserving candidates getting into DU through sports quota is further damaging the foundation.

Enterprising players have found a way to arrange for fake certificates and the Delhi University Sports Council officials aren’t too eager to cross check the merit of the certificates.

Documents in possession of the Hindustan Times reveal that some of the candidates have either furnished certificates from organisations that exist only on paper or recognised by neither the sports ministry nor the Indian Olympic Association (IOA).

A candidate from Uttar Pradesh whose name has been withheld has made the DU cut based on a certificate issued by an association called the All Uttar Pradesh State Sports Association. According to the certificate, he won a bronze in the junior boys’ 200m at the ‘state-level’ competition held last year in Baruat in Baghpat district.

Organising track and field events in Uttar Pradesh is the prerogative of the Uttar Pradesh Athletics Association (UPAA) and its secretary PK Srivastava denied the involvement of his association with any junior state meet in Baghpat last year. “We didn’t approve or organise any competition in Baghpat last year,” Srivastava told Hindustan Times. “I think the certificate is fake. More than hundred such cases have come to light in the past few months,” he added.

At the trials conducted by DU, the athlete from UP got 37 out of a possible 60 and on the basis of his ‘fake’ certificate, got 21 out of 40 taking his aggregate to 58 out of 100 and made the cut.

In another case, a candidate furnished a certificate issued by the Rural Games Federation of India (RGFI), an organisation not affiliated to either IOA or recognised by the sports ministry.

Pradeep Kataria, general secretary of the RGFI accepted it but told HT from Rohtak: “We organise national level competitions in over 10 disciplines including wrestling, boxing and athletics.”

Another prospective student too cleared the selection process. He had a participation certificate in athletics issued by an organisation called the National Youth Games Committee of India, which is said to have organised the third edition of the National Youth Games in Raiwala in Haridwar, Uttrakhand.

The fact is, all recognised youth and age-group events are organised by the National Sports Federations (NSFs). In this case, the official national youth athletics meet was organised by the Athletics Federation of India (AFI) in May 2016 at Kozhikode, Kerala. And based on that, the country’s top athletes participated in second Asian Youth Athletics Championship in Bangkok, Thailand.

Surinder Singh, assistant professor of physical education at Keshav Mahavidhyalaya, was the convener for athletics at DU. He said documents were cross checked only if complaints were registered.

“It’s difficult to verify each and every document. There were 700 candidates at the athletics trials,” he said.

Ravi Bhattacharya of Khalsa College who is a member of the college sports committee, said: “We tally the original certificates to those submitted to us.”

Anil Kalkal, director DU Sports Council said: “It’s a lengthy procedure. Over 11,000 candidates apply for sports quota seats. We are aware of the loopholes in the system and will try to incorporate new rules from the next session.”