Kolkata: Unable to withstand the heat of a united agitation by the students backed by the teachers and alumni, Jadavpur University (JU) has reverted to the time-tested system of holding entrance test for admission to undergraduate courses in the humanities.
The executive council (EC) of the varsity, which held an emergency meeting today afternoon in view of the fast-unto-death agitation by 20 students since 7 July, decided to restore the entrance test.
However, the test will enjoy 50 per cent weightage; scores in class XII exam will make of for the remaining 50 per cent in finalising the merit list for admission to undergraduate courses in English, Bengali, history, philosophy, political science, and comparative literature.
The EC had approved this 50:50 weightage formula in its meeting on 27 June and the students and teachers did not object.
But, reportedly due to a verbal advice from the state education minister Partha Chatterjee that there should be only one method for admission to humanities and other branches of studies, the EC on 4 July scrapped the entrance test entirely. It decided that admission will be allowed on the basis of class XII scores alone.
Peeved at this, the students resorted to a sit-in agitation on the campus from that day itself. Stepping up the pressure, 20 of them started a fast-unto-death from 7 July. Since yesterday, four of the fasting students have been hospitalised as their condition deteriorated. They are Somashree Choudhury, Usashi Pal, Anuska Paul, and Reaaz Hasan.
As the EC meeting began at the campus around 2.30 pm today, a section of students held a demonstration in front of the administrative building of the varsity. Another large section of students and alumni took out a protest rally from the campus and walked up to Selimpur via Jadavpur police station.
The EC could not arrive at a unanimous decision on restoring the entrance as there were one or two members who went on advocating for the direct admission. But the heat of a mounting protest outside finally made the EC take back its decision to scrap the entrance test.
The dates for the entrance test and related information will be announced subsequently.