Congress leader B. Manickam Tagore has written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking an investigation into violation of reservation policies for Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribe and Other Backward Class students by deemed Universities, including some prominent ones such as Birla Institute of Technology and Science, Pilani and Vellore Institute of Technology.
“The underrepresentation of these communities not only hampers the diversity within these institutions but also perpetuates social disparities. I urge you to direct the concerned authorities to investigate and take necessary actions to rectify the inadequacies in the implementation of reservation policies,” the Member of Parliament from Tamil Nadu wrote.
In his letter he attached a list of 20 engineering institutions providing their percentage of SC/ST and OBC students, which in some cases was as low as 2% to 5%.
The Manipal Institute of Technology in Karnataka has enrolled only 227 SC/ST and OBC students — a mere 2.74% of total undergraduate students, according to the MP’s letter. Birla Institute of Technology and Science, Pilani, was shown to have only 580 students from reserved categories accounting for only 5.49% of total undergraduate students (UG). Vellore Institute of Technology in Tamil Nadu admitted only 24.63% SC/ST and OBC students in UG programmes, who totalled 6,451. Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham had 1,382 students from these three categories or only 24.63% of total UG students.
Section 14 of the University Grants Commission (Deemed to be Universities) Regulations, 2022 requires institutions to implement the reservation policy on reservations in admissions and recruitment and disclose all such information of its website. The Central quota requires 15% reservation for SC, 7.5% for ST, 27% for OBC and 10% for Economically Weaker Section students
In a separate social media post, Congress leader Jairam Ramesh also hit out at the PM for UGC’s recent notification asking universities and colleges to set up selfie-points with images of PM Modi and encourage students and visitors to pose with them. “Our selfie-obsessed and self-obsessed PM is so insecure in the run up to Lok Sabha polls that he’s leaving no stone unturned to save his flailing image...the people will give a suitable answer very soon,” Mr. Ramesh wrote.