Start 11th Admissions in Maharashtra Now!

Start 11th Admissions in Maharashtra Now!

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It has been almost two months since the Government of Maharashtra has put on hold the admissions to First Year Junior College (FYJC) as well as other post 10th class admissions including engineering diploma and Industrial Training (ITI) courses due to Maratha Reservation issue. This unjustified delay has caused tremendous agony to around 15 lakh students in the state and their parents and is having an adverse impact on the students' academic progress and career.

The admissions were stopped mid-way after the Supreme Court (SC), on September 9, directed the government to conduct the admissions to all educational institutes without the recently introduced 12% Socially and Educational Backward Castes (SEBC) reservations for the Maratha community, while referring the question of legality of this quota to a larger bench. On October 27, SC adjourned the matter for four weeks as the senior lawyer representing the state remained absent in the court, which will further delay the admissions.

It must be pointed out that there's nothing in the court's interim judgment that prevents the state from continuing admissions with the earlier scheme of reservations (Read the order). However, the state chose to put a brake on the entire admission process altogether. This appears to be a politically motivated move, with complete disregard for the educational needs and aspirations of the wider student community. 

The students were already anxious as their results and admissions got delayed due to Covid-19 pandemic and there's still uncertainty over the reopening of colleges. The state's indecisiveness has added to their worries. While the government has recently introduced online classes for FYJC students, it's unlikely that they will be able to complete the vast syllabus on time. Many of the students in the state are also preparing for the entrance tests for professional courses. This uncertainty doesn't bode well for their performance.

We are not against reservation for Marathas, but it's unfair to hold such a large population of students hostage merely for political gains. The state can pursue the matter legally, while simultaneously continuing the admission process unhindered. It can also consider setting aside the seats earmarked for SEBC reservation and completing the admissions for rest of the seats. The remaining seats can be filled after a final verdict from SC.

We urge the Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and Government of Maharashtra to resolve this issue and start all the held-up admissions at the earliest, so that students can be educated without any constraints.

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