A+ A-

Kolkata: Caught between the education minister and the student-teacher unity over the modalities for admission to undergraduate courses, the vice-chancellor of Jadavpur University Suranjan Das expressed his desire to step down.

Das today called on Governor KN Tripathi at Raj Bhavan and told him that it has become extremely difficult for him to run the university when a vast section of the students and teachers are agitating demanding bringing back entrance test for admission to UG courses in the humanities.

The executive council of the varsity, of which the VC is a member, on 4 July, scrapped the previous decision to admit new students on the basis of scores in the entrance test and class XII exam with 50:50 weight.

This is because the education minister Partha Chatterjee publicly said that the varsity should have a uniform modality for admitting students. Entrance test for humanities and class XII exam score for science and engineering is not desired, he had said.

Prior to calling on the Governor, the VC met the education minister at the latter’s residence at Naktala in the city. The meeting lasted for about 30-minutes during which the VC is reported to have said that he cannot take the “undemocratic pressure anymore.”

Ever since the executive council scrapped the entrance test and decided to admit students on the basis of class XII score alone, a large section of students of the varsity is on a continuous sit-in on the campus and have even threatened an indefinite fast.

The students today boycotted the classes as well. Teachers of the university, under the banner of Left-leaning Jadavpur University Teachers’ Association (JUTA) also organised a sit-in and class boycott from 12-3 pm.

Both the students and the teachers are of the view that admitting students only on the basis of class XII score will compromise with the quality of the students and in turn, will damage the overall reputation of the varsity.

“The education minister is trying to destroy a procedure that is time-tested. This is interference in the autonomy of the university. The executive council cannot change its decisions so frequently at the cost of thousands of students.  We are thinking of legal recourse against this,” JUTA secretary Partha Pratim Roy said.