Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Letter to AMU-VC on Merit System in Ph.D. Admission being corrupted

  Naved Ashrafi       Tuesday, February 23, 2016

December 21, 2015

Dear Guardian,

Many good things are happening in the university campus. Congratulations. All credit goes to you. But when something wrong happens in the university, whole Alig community has to bear its brunt morally or otherwise.

I wish to draw your kind attention towards a very genuine and of course an obnoxious issue which, otherwise, is not put in open before national media hitherto !

Regarding M.Phil/ Ph.D. admissions, I must apprise you that Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) has very clear and categorical rules for admission to research programs. Chapter XXV (B) of the Ordinances (Academic) for Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) says that:

  • Admission to Ph.D. ‘will’ be made through admission test comprising (a) written test and (b) presentation-cum-interview [vide. Clause 3.1 (i)]
  • Qualifying NET/ JRF examination ‘will’ exempt a candidate from taking the written test at their will. The ordinance clause writes further in BOLD that such candidates “will be deemed to have obtained 35 marks in the written test. However such candidates will have the option of appearing in the written test to improve upon”. [vide. Clause 3.1 (ii)]
  • Most importantly, ordinance uses the word “will” and not “shall”, which guarantees that there shall be “strict” adherence to the rules.

Above provisions is excellent example of –what we call in modern democratic societies – “Merit System”. We spend myriad spondulicks in determining merits of different entrance tests in the university so that rationality, objectivity and scientism should prevail and we must get best from the national treasure of talent. We are not here to make nepotism and favoritism re-incarnate in our system! Thus, we hold that Merit Rule will be strictly followed and Merit will have nothing to do with NET/JRF certificate. NET/JRF certificate shall only be in lieu of minimum 35 marks in written test.

Now, with utmost veneration, reverence and request, I should discuss you what had happened in the Department of Arabic. First, let me ask- who shall, in strict accordance of the merit, be given provisional admission to Ph.D program—rank 10th or 11th or 12th?

Rank 10th and 11th candidates Mr. Mohd Salman and Mr. Asghar Abdul Mujeeb got 56.00 marks while Ms. Hashmi A. (rank 12th) got 54.75 marks [vide. D.No. 582/ARB/ 11.09.2015- file attached]. Ms. Hashmi A. was given admission violating the sacrosanct “Merit” rule. Mr. Salman told me that he had informed the Vice-Chancellor but in grave despondency nothing has been achieved so far! Perhaps, he was told by some authorities in the department or the office of Controller of exams that the decision rested with the BOS and CASR. His point was that they all three candidates deserved admission but only third candidate was provisionally [and illegally] allowed. Although, two more vacancies are there under Dr. Ahsanullah Khan but only Ms. Hasmi A. was given chance.

To my extreme astonishment, I am unable to understand how can BOS or CASR determine things at their ‘absolute’ leeway? If admissions were to be given at the ‘whims’ and ‘fancies’, there needn’t stage a farce of examination, merits, admit card, presentation and sundry other painstaking tasks! Ms. Hashmi A. is a JRF qualifier, and if JRF is the reason behind the admission, it is against the Ph.D. ordinance.

Moreover, if JRF was made a criterion of admission, there are hundreds of students in the university who are 3-4 time NET/JRF qualifiers but they are out only because they could not make it to the Final Merit List of their departments.

I, therefore, request you to kindly make these deprived students take admission in research program. AMU are meeting with the PM and telling our achievements to the world. On the other flank, what would we portray to the world if such lacunae unfortunately become explicit to media! Kindly take strict steps against the authorities in university where things are kept “fishy” to mire students in grim despondency. These deprived students are innocent people. They hesitate in meeting officials, visiting higher offices in the university due to our “unfortunate” bureaucratic framework of working style. They are not like those hooligans who take up arms/katta and destroy university property, reputation and what not- but unfortunately got their bad wills fulfilled !! Alas !!

Thanking you in great anticipation.

Doctoral Candidate (Public Administration)
Deptt. of Political Science, AMU, Aligarh

Official Merit List:

Facebook link of Mr. Salman: https://www.facebook.com/salman.sammu.3

This letter was made confidential, which otherwise is being made public by the author.


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