With social distancing rules in place, gathering of any kind is prohibited to stop the spread of the novel coronavirus. As a result, the government has made it mandatory for all educational institutes to conduct admissions to undergraduate courses online so that students do not have to visit the individual institutes.
Close to 160 colleges affiliated to CU had migrated to the online admission system two years ago, albeit some grudgingly, because some institutes could not conduct entrance exams because of the shift, while others felt it was an attempt to curtail their independence. But now that the online infrastructure is up and running, principals of various colleges seemed relieved that their institutes did not face any difficulty in conducting admissions, the procedure of which started on August 10.
“In hindsight, it seems like a blessing that the colleges completely shifted to the online admission system. Students visited the colleges only after they secured admission,” said Tapan Kumar Poddar, president of All Bengal Principals’ Council. “Had the institutes not shifted online, they would have faced with a huge task of going online now.”
Gokhale Memorial Girls’ College principal Atashi Karpha said, “Even our staff are now trained in handling the online admission procedure. Candidates can access all information on the college’s website.”
In 2017, the state government instructed colleges to move their admission procedure online after complaints poured in that unscrupulous union members extorted money from candidates, promising them seats in subjects of their choice. In 2018 and 2019, the entire process was shifted online.
The time and effort invested in migrating from offline to online was now proving beneficial. “There is a perception that CU is not too prompt in embracing technology, but it is one of the very few universities in the country, where every affiliated college is holding online admission. Even in other big cities, students had to visit institutes to get their testimonials verified even till last year,” said a university official associated with admissions.