[ Ronnie Nido ]
In exactly a week from now -on the 19th of June, 2018, the University of Delhi (DU) will announce its first cut-off list much akin to a referee saying “Go!” in a race.
Thousands (if not lakhs) of Arunachalese will flock to the national capital seeking admissions for their loved ones. Once in Delhi, these Arunachalese will then face challenges like soaring temperatures (40 degrees average), queues for admissions, documents involved, accommodations, transportation and so much more.
I know this because I went through it as well when I came seeking admission in DU in the summer of 2011. I came with my mother (first for both of us), ill-prepared for the chaos in Delhi and ended up being sick for over a week.
So, as my moral responsibility towards anyone who will be seeking admissions this year, I sat down with the members of the Arunachal Students Union Delhi (ASUD) to chalk out guidelines that could help Arunachali families visiting Delhi for admissions, deal a little better with the admission stress.
Seek Local Support:
Unbeknownst to many, there are institutions (both governmental and voluntary) that can help Arunachalese know better about the admission process. The general secretary of ASUD, Dewan Natung informed that they assist the officers from the Department of Education, who have to make note of every child from Arunachal studying in Delhi.
“Since it is physically impossible for the few officers to assist the thousands of students, ASUD and its members help them out” he adds.
ASUD sets up admission desks in both North Campus and South Campus to hand hold the students through the entire admission process. A recent outreach video conducted by the ASUD for the Delhi admissions lists the contact persons to be – Japken Kena (8860733816) Byabang Tulon (8527485521), Tana Niya Tara (7005912336) and Rikar Dini (8837434121)
Seeking local support is also crucial in determining the validity of other institutions (other than DU). There are many institutions around the NCR (National Capital Region) that are not affiliated to the UGC and give out easy admissions (mostly technical degrees) in return for money. “We recently went to an isolated institution in the Panipat region where the hostels had only Arunachalese who had come there via brokers”, adds Natung.
Understand the admission process:
“My experience with admission has been that our Arunachali people assume that DU admissions will be like that of Dera Natung College or Rajiv Gandhi University, where everything happens in one place, but it is not like that,” says Rikar Dini, the convenor of ASUD. Unlike colleges in Arunachal Pradesh, DU has more than 75 colleges affiliated to it, which are spread across the NCR. While the cut-off list is declared online or in the two campuses (North and South), the admissions of each of these colleges occur in their respective campuses. So, one must be prepared to travel across the city if the location of your preferred colleges demands so.
Further, it is called the ‘first’ cut off because there are going to be ‘second’ and ‘third’ too. One only gets a period of three days to seek admissions under the first cut off list. So, if a student qualifies in the first cut off, it is crucial that the admission is completed within the three-day period.
The ASUD members insist that one must carry all the documents uploaded at the time of registration, both original and scanned. These documents are your Class-X and XII pass certificate, Class-X and XII mark sheets, ST certificates, PRC, Migration Certificate, Passport size photos and Income Certificate (if applicable). A strong advice is to carry five to six scanned copies of all these documents and to self-attest the scanned copies before submissions. Often times, the original documents need to be submitted for verification so one must carry the originals.
Accommodation during admissions:
DU admissions are a lengthy process hence one must come with the mental preparation to at least stay for a week if not more. During this time, while the Arunachal Bhavan and Arunachal Houses are existing state services in the NCR, it is extremely hard to get rooms due to the demand. ASUD, as a voluntary body often negotiates with the state government to open the dormitories but even that can only house 20 people. Hence, it is advisable that visiting families stay with relatives (if they have any in Delhi) or seek hotels or lodges from trusted online websites. One must be careful to take a hotel near the north campus or south campus of DU so that travelling becomes a little easier.
Travelling within the city:
The Delhi Metro is the easiest way to travel the long distance in the city for an affordable and comfortable ride. One can read more about them on their website(delhimetrorail.com). The metro guarantees that you reach your destination within a particular time and also keeps you sheltered from the Delhi heat.
Experiences around autos in Delhi have ranged from okay to worst, so one is advised to stick to online cab services like Ola or Uber.
The ASUD members have recently taken a welcome initiative to standardize the cab prices outside the Arunachal Bhavan and Arunachal House areas. A small car would charge INR 1400 (80Kms and 8hours) and a large car would charge anywhere between INR 1800 to 2400 (depending on the size) for the same distance and time.
The only bit of advice the ASUD members have for the incoming families is to not take up any unfortunate matters in their own hands. “Our people must know that the community fabric here is different than that of Arunachal” they add.
Instead, if one finds themselves in the midst of a difficult circumstance remember to call 1093 (the toll-free number of the Special Police Unit for North East Region, SPUNER). In case, if the number is not reachable, call the Delhi Police helpline 100 and ask to be directed to the SPUNER cell or the DPNER (Delhi Police for North East Region). The cell consists of volunteers from all NE state who will come out and help the person concerned.
Further, always keep the number of Arunachal House and Bhavan handy in case of medical emergencies. Arunachal House: 011-26117728, 26117729, 26117727 and Arunachal Bhawan: 011-23013915/ 23013844/23012152/ 23793449/ 23793455.
Enjoy the process:
Lastly, it is important that the families enjoy their time in Delhi so as to not get caught in the admission stress. Delhi has much to offer in terms of food, art, shopping and cultural events. Places like Majnu Ka Tila (near North Campus) and Safdurjung (near South Campus) are popular places to eat North-Eastern Cuisines when the North Indian cuisines become overwhelming. A personal favourite remains the Naga Stall in Delhi Haat(near INA metro station).
The markets of Sarojini and Lajpat are known nationwide for their affordable fashion. And the historical monuments of Qutab Minar, Red Fort, Chandni Chowk, Humayun’s Tomb are one for the books.
Finally, remember to keep yourself hydrated in the scorching heat and always seek support in case if you find yourself in some unknown circumstances. Here is wishing everyone happy and easy admission process on behalf of ASUD and yours truly. (The contributor is an independent researcher whose writings can be found at facebook.com/thedawnlitstories)