IIT Kanpur modies composition of its SC/ST/OBC/EWS/PWD Cell

The official notification by the institute was issued in this regard on September 8, Friday
IIT Kanpur (Picture: PTI)
IIT Kanpur (Picture: PTI)

The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kanpur has modified the composition of its SC/ST/OBC/EWS/PWD (Scheduled Caste/Scheduled Tribe/Other Backward Classes/Economically Weaker Section/Persons With Disabilities) Cell with immediate effect. 

The revamped cell will have the following responsibilities:

1. Supervision in maintenance and upkeep of complaint register and reservation rosters.
2. To act as the Standing Advisory Committee on SC/ST/OBC/EWS/PWD.
3. To assist in compliance with the orders of reservation issues and other benefits admissible from time to time in favour of SCS/STS/OBCs/EWSs/PWDs and to liaise with government agencies with respect to the supply of required information, answering queries and clearing doubts with respect to reservations data/information, etc.
4. To liaise/coordinate with Diversity and Inclusion Cell for implementation of policies/ orders etc. regarding equal opportunity.

According to the official notification by the institute issued in this regard on September 8, Friday, the cell will work under the superintendence and directions of the director and deputy director of IIT Kanpur.

What netizens have to say
The move seems to have impressed former IITians, as an alumnus from IIT Madras and IRS officer, Nethrapal, mentions on X that the cell has been "set up with full powers in IIT Kanpur".

The verified user of X also writes, "This has been possible because of a few IIT Kanpur alumni who took up the matter with the director and ensured delivery of the same. Other alumni/social groups should take up the same in other IITs."

However, another verified X user, Archana Sonti, posts, "Special IT cell is based on #Caste #discrimination, why #EWS included? And BCs are not discriminated based on caste." She also questioned the inclusion of the EWS category in the cell. 

Demands for SC/ST Cells
It may be noted that students across all IITs have been demanding a revamped SC/ST Cell, especially after the death by suicide of several IIT students between 2022 and 2023. 

The latest such case was reported this month from IIT Delhi, where an SC student, Anil Kumar, took his life. Students have alleged that there is an absence of a proper mechanism to help such students vent their problems. They also alleged that there is a lack of SC/ST faculty representation across the elite institutes.

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