13,000 Students From Reserved Categories Dropped Out From Top Universities, IITs, IIMs In Last 5 Years

Published By: Sukanya Nandy

Last Updated: December 05, 2023, 15:35 IST

The government has reduced fees, established more institutes, and prioritised scholarships to support financially disadvantaged students in pursuing education (Representative Image)

“Students have multiple options and they choose to migrate across institutions and from one course/programme to another in the same institution,” said Sarkar

In the last five years, more than 13,600 students from reserved categories have dropped out from Central Universities, Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), and Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs), according to data presented by Union Minister of State for Education, Subhas Sarkar, in the Lok Sabha on Monday, December 4. Sarkar detailed the breakdown of the dropouts:

Number of dropouts in Central Universities:

— 4,596 OBC students

— 2,424 SC students

— 2,622 ST students

In IITs, the dropout numbers were:

— 2,066 OBC students

— 1,068 SC students

— 408 ST students

For IIMs, the dropout figures were:

— 163 OBC students

— 188 SC students

— 91 ST students

Possible reasons for dropping out

Providing insight into the factors contributing to dropouts, Sarkar explained, “In the higher education sector, students have multiple options and they choose to migrate across institutions and from one course/programme to another in the same institution.”

“The migration/withdrawal, if any, is mainly on account of securing seats by the students in other departments or institutions of their choice or on any personal ground,” he added, as per The Indian Express.

The minister clarified that National Law Universities (NLUs) operate under Acts enacted by respective state legislatures, classifying them as state universities. As a result, the central government does not maintain data on dropout students from NLUs.

Sarkar outlined several government initiatives, including fee reduction, the establishment of more institutes, scholarships, and prioritised access to national-level scholarships. He also highlighted specific schemes benefiting SC and ST students. “For the welfare of SC and ST students, schemes like ‘waiver of tuition fees in IITs’, grant of national scholarships under Central Sector Scheme, scholarships in Institutes etc. are also there,” he said.

Institutions have implemented various structures such as equal opportunity cells, student grievance committees, student grievance cells, student social clubs, liaison officers, and liaison committees, among others, to proactively tackle any concerns that may arise for SC/ST students. The minister also highlighted that the University Grants Commission (UGC) periodically issues directives aimed at promoting fairness and unity among students.

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