Post FYUP mess, is there a need to overhaul education system?

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DU students protesting against FYUP
After a long standoff between the University Grants Commission (UGC) and Delhi University (DU), the University finally gave in to scrap the controversial four-year undergraduate programme (FYUP) on Friday, reverting to the three-year degree format. This has paved way for commencement of the stalled admissions which are likely to kick off from Tuesday.

This may be a reason to celebrate for those who were opposing the FYUP, but it comes as a shocker for those who are already enrolled in the course and have completed their first year in the same. The experts believe that this decision to scrap FYUP might harm the university more than the existing mess.

Amongst teachers and students also there are two teams: one which is in favour of the program and other which is against it.

Those in favour of FYUP believe that there are courses which are getting old and irrelevant as the university has been working in the same mould for decades. But with the introduction of FYUP a number of things came which were badly needed to revive such courses.

DU admissions likely to start, but several questions still remain unanswered

Teachers who were dismayed at the rollback of the programme also said that if this programme would have been executed properly then it would have drastically changed the face of the university.

But on the other hand those who were against the programme believed that with this programme, they would have ended up learning what they have already learnt in the school as there were courses which sought to make students more aware of the problems faced by our country.

Students caught in the crossfire

With the DU bowing to UGC directives and scrapping the FYUP, no more admissions will be taking place for the four year B Tech and Bachelor in Management Sciences (BMS) courses.

The university on Saturday cancelled the B Tech and BMS courses. Future of thousands of students who are already enrolled under the FYUP hangs in the balance as things are yet to reach a conclusion on this front.

How can an education system treat such serious issues with causal whimsy? How can a premier institution like DU keep its students in such suspense and play with their future? In this tug of war between the UGC and DU the only sufferer is the "student." Those who have already been enrolled in the academic year of 2013 are left with nothing but a vague road ahead.

Logjam over but a long road ahead

The question which comes to one's mind is if UGC was so hell-bent on scrapping FYUP then why did it allow FYUP's introduction? The only plausible answer is that UGC honchos want to curry favour with the Governments which are at power. When the UPA Government was in power they introduced the programme amid protests and when they sensed that the current Government that is NDA is against FYUP, they scrapped it.

Do you think if the Delhi University had been a private institution, the scenario would have been same? The autonomous decision of UGC would not have been bunged on DU to launch the FYUP if it would have been a private body. A private institution would not launch a programme without doing proper market research. But when a Government is footing the bill, then who will bother about the further consequences?

Does this mean that the role of Government should be minimised in running an educational institution and there is need to revamo the complete system so that students don't have to suffer?

Questions which still remain:

It seems that everything is going back to normal now but several questions still remain unanswered. Who is the real culprit in the whole episode? Why didn't DU or UGC look at future prospects while giving a go-ahead to FYUP? Is it high time for Modi Government to revamp the education policies? Should DU be privatised?

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