D.N.I.S. News Network, India: This year Delhi University raised the number of seats reserved for disabled students from 1200 to 1589 - a remarkable step. This year also saw a five year high in the number of registrations in that category. But even then, more than 1000 seats reserved for disabled students will remain vacant.
“This year only 375 students have applied under the disability quota at Delhi University. The University is disappointed with the low registrations,” says Seema M. Parihar, admission coordinator for physically disabled students and Deputy Dean of Student Welfare. “One of the biggest reasons why we do not get more disabled students is because parents do not encourage their children for further studies,” she adds.
She also feels that mostly disabled students from affluent families come to avail the reservation.
Most of the applicants have a visual impairment. Dyslexic students came second with 28 students registering as opposed to 18 last year. Also another improvement from last year is the percentage of marks. Four candidates have over 90 percent while another 35 have marks ranging from 80 to 90 percent.
Most sought after courses were B.A., B.Com. (Honours), Hindi (Honours) and Political Science (Honours).
According to counselors teaching remains the most coveted career for disabled students. “Most students also want to try for I.A.S. once they graduate,” says Parihar.
It may be mentioned that D.U. had taken several steps to make the campus and courses more disabled friendly.
The varsity had constructed ramps in many colleges. Screen readers were installed in the computers at the registration desk for the benefit of visually impaired students.
A new course on Mass Media - News Reading and Anchoring - is also being introduced in Delhi University to teach disabled students the expertise needed for jobs in the media.