Will Delhi University implement NEP's four-year Bachelors' degree from July 2021?

DU's first NEP committee was first formed on September 25 during the tenure of Dr Yogesh Kumar Tyagi and was expanded in November by the current administration led by Dr P C Joshi
Delhi University (Pic:PTI)
Delhi University (Pic:PTI)

The Delhi University's NEP Implementation Committee (NIC) has suggested a full-fledged plan for implementing the Four Year Bachelors' Programme, said sources. But the DU Teachers' Association (DUTA) and a section of the teachers have opposed the implementation of the NEP calling it "an attempt to dissolve the university system".

In a mail, reportedly sent to the members of the committee, the Chairman of the NIC had sent a plan for the four-year-long Bachelors' with an option to drop out with a certificate or a diploma in the first and second year respectively. The mail sent on December 15 has the breakup of the four-year course with the options to drop out as well.

"Rushed mindless restructuring has compromised the quality and harmed students time and again," said Dr Rajib Ray, President, DUTA and added that implementing NEP will only add to that. "DU students are being used as lab rats. Teachers and students across the country have opposed NEP as the thrust remains on the commercialisation of the education sector. It is extremely unfortunate that instead of focusing on how best to reach out to students during a pandemic, policies are being bulldozed. The DUTA will have its Executive meeting early next week to discuss this matter," he added.

DU's first NEP Committee was first formed on September 25 during the tenure of Dr Yogesh Kumar Tyagi and was expanded in November by the current administration led by Dr P C Joshi. "This committee has been instructed by the Government to carry the mandate of aligning DU with the dubious provisions of the NEP. The discredited Four Year Undergraduate Programme (FYUP), which was withdrawn by the government in 2014 after a massive movement by the students and the teachers, is being given a fresh lease of life by the ruling dispensation at the centre," said Dr Nandita Narain, President of the Democratic Teachers' Front (DTF).

In a statement, DTF pointed out the possible ramifications it can have. According to them, "Honours courses will be recast into majors in four years. Students will not get an honours degree in three years. Language courses and smaller departments not offering Honours courses will eventually close down. There will be a massive impact on workload for the next three years till the fourth year begins," it said and added, "Exit points after first and second year with a Certificate and Diploma respectively, are yet another attempt to throw away students with a false notion of achievement. The course structure leading to these exit points show that coursework cannot add to their abilities, knowledge and worth. The first few semesters are largely of basic courses which do not have any real academic rigour or skill to be attained by students," added the statement from the teachers.

The teachers also said that this gives them very little time to prepare or pitch in with suggestions. "The ongoing process of academic restructuring as per the dictates of the NEP is a great leap forward in fast-tracking the final dissolution of the University system. What is worse is the attempt of the DU administration to implement the NEP from the coming academic year, starting July 2021, which gives no time to teachers to deliberate on the recommendations," said Dr Abha Dev Habib, Secretary of the DTF and also the Treasurer of DUTA.

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