New Delhi: An unusual proposal to reserve 40 percent of the seats for male students was introduced at the staff meeting of the St Stephen's College on Friday, but was met with vehement disapproval from the teachers who said they were "taken aback" by the "absurd" idea.
College Principal Valson Thampu introduced the proposal before the college staff at a meeting held this morning. The idea that has earlier been discussed by the Supreme
Council of the college proposed a reservation of 40 per cent of the college seats for male students.
However, the meeting that was attended by around 50 teachers, saw heated arguments, with the teachers denouncing the move on procedural, constitutional and academic grounds, as well as on the issue of gender equality.
The proposal was mooted on the ground that when the college was made co-educational in 1975, it was stated that steps should be taken to ensure that 75 per cent of students are male, said a teacher who attended the meeting.
So incensed were the teachers by the idea that one of them walked out of the meeting and some said they would not participate in the admissions if this was implemented. "The Principal had not expected such a vehement opposition from the teachers. So, he decided to backtrack from the idea, saying that he had kept a window open and that he would go back to the Supreme Council of the college to defer the move for this year," said Prof Nandita Narain of the college.
At present, there are 64 per cent women students at the prestigious college, making them a majority over their male counterparts.
"Arguments were made that women students are taking up a majority of seats and that there were also a number of women's colleges in Delhi University. If this is the case then you should make the boys do well, not deny seats to meritorious girls," she said.


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