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Relief for students, B.Tech to be 4-yr course for those admitted in 2013-14

PTI June 29, 2014 19:04 IST
New Delhi: In a relief to hundreds of students, the Delhi University was today directed by UGC to continue with the four-year B.Tech programme for those admitted in academic year 2013-14, bringing to an end the uncertainty following rollback of the controversial FYUP.

The directive by the University Grants Commission(UGC) came even as scores of BTech and BMS students of Delhi University staged a protest outside the residence of Human Resource Development Minister Smriti Irani, demanding that their four-year courses should not be scrapped.

A meeting of the Standing Advisory Committee is being convened tomorrow to discuss about the fate of the Bachelor in Management Studies (BMS) course.

“We are going to discuss tomorrow. I am going to convene a meeting of the Standing Advisory Committee and we will be taking a decision on this,” UGC Vice Chairman H Devaraj said.

Around 6,500 students were enrolled last year in six B.Tech programmes—Computer Science, Electronics, Food Technology, Polymer Science, Instrumentation and Electronics and Psychological Science—in 35 colleges, according to a DU official. About 840 students are pursuing the BMS course. They have been protesting ever since the rollback of FYUP.

The UGC also asked DU to ensure that colleges under it, which admitted students to the four-year undergraduate programme (FYUP), obtain approval from regulatory bodies such as UGC itself and AICTE to ensure that students under FYUP are not put to any disadvantage.

“4-year B.Tech Programmes in Computer Science, Electronics, Food Technology, Instrumentation Electronics and Polymer Science {where such students were admitted in the colleges under Delhi University} and which are covered under section 22 of the UGC Act, with respect to B.Tech, may continue in these programmes only for the students already admitted for academic year 2013-14,” a UGC statement said.

The Commission was, however, silent on the Psychological Science course. This programme, also with the BMS programme, are likely to be converted into three- year courses, officials said.

Under pressure from UGC to act on its directive, DU yesterday scrapped its four-year undergraduate programme (FYUP) and reverted to the previous 3-year structure.

The DU also decided to discontinue its BTech and BMS courses and not hold any fresh admissions to them.

The directive of UGC is in line with the recommendation of its Standing Committee, which has suggested that the programme should continue in the four-year format for the students already admitted so that there is no “prejudice” caused to their interest.

Outside Irani's residence here, protesting students raised slogans - “We want BTech”, “We want BMS” and “UGC down down.” They also tried to enter the residence, but were stopped by Delhi Police personnel.

“We are staging protest as BMS and BTech students are getting affected so much due to scrapping of FYUP. HRD Minister and UGC should take care of our interest,” Rekha, a protester, said.

Some students also sat on hunger strike outside Irani's residence and said they will not budge till their demands were met.