After the BJP swept the polls with an overwhelming majority, a mood of uncertainty seems to have gripped Delhi University (DU), with many wondering about the fate of the university’s four-year undergraduate programme.
While the university has expressed in clear terms that there was “no question” of rolling back FYUP, the BJP leadership has refused to back down from its stand, saying that they will “deliver on their poll promise” and do whatever it takes to “roll back the programme”.
“The decision to implement FYUP was taken by the academic and executive council of the university, the competent authorities to do so. So, as far as the university is concerned, the question of rolling back the course does not arise,” Malay Neerav, DU’s media coordinator, said.
The BJP, on its part, refused to budge from its position. “We feel very strongly that the decision to implement FYUP needs to be reviewed. We are of the view that the programme should be rolled back, and the university should go back to the old three-year course. We’ll do whatver it takes to do that,” Dr Harsh Vardhan, Delhi BJP president, told Newsline.
“Let the government be formed and start functioning. Rolling back FYUP was one of the promises we made to the public and we will keep it,” Dr Udit Raj, BJP MP from Northwest Delhi, said.
The Delhi BJP, in its poll manifesto, had promised to scrap the four-year undergraduate programme, if it came to power.
University teachers also seem to be divided over the issue. “The university cannot be run from party headquarters and, trying to do so, would not just amount to interference in university affairs, but would be a gross violation of its autonomy. If the party tries to do so, it will strongly be resisted by the academic community,” Aditya Narayan Misra, member, Executive Council, said.
“Political parties do not have the power to take such a big decision on part of the university. If implementation of FYUP was not the decision of a party, how can its rollback be its decision?” questioned Ritesh Singh, Deputy Dean.
Others like Nandita Narain, president, Delhi University Teachers’ Union, feel that it can be done and that many in the university were looking to the party to fulfill its poll promise.
“The university is centrally funded and is under the UGC. The Central government could easily route the rollback through the UGC or recommend the same to the President