Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Marathwada University (Bamu) seems to have completely ignored the University Grants Commission (UGC) directives to hold PhD Entrance Tests (PETs) twice, every academic session. In the past eight years, the varsity has held only two such exams.
The university had issued a notification for fresh PET last year, but things have not progressed till date, putting research aspirants in a fix. Incidentally , a section of candidates, who had cleared the last PET held in 2014, are still awaiting research guides.
Though no official streamwise data about such students on wait list has been compiled, the number of affected students is expected to be considerable. Held in 2014, over 7,000 aspirants had taken the PET conducted against an intake capacity of over 1,500 seats.
A research aspirant from social science department said the UGC should take a serious note of the lapse on the part of Bamu in skipping PET. “Bamu has been shying away from the responsibility and as a fallout, fresh pass-outs have been suffering,“ he said, on condition of anonymity .
Nandkumar Nikam, president of state principals' forum said every state university should comply with the apex regulatory body's directives.“The university authorities should explain why they haven't held PET in the recent past. If there are inevitable reasons for not holding PET, they should be addressed through collective efforts,“ he said.
As per data available for PhD admission process for 2014-15, over 100 candidates had applied for research in electronics engineering, around 80 for computer engineering, nearly 35 for mechanical engineering and more than 25 for civil engineering.
State principals forum has also suggested that the UGC should amend its two-year-old directive pertaining to research guide that prohibits retired faculty from offering guidance. “They are highly resourceful persons and should be allowed to be guides. The mo ve, if taken, would not only address the issue, but would also offer quality guidance,“ Nikam said.
Gajanan Sanap, former member of management council of BAMU, said qualifying for PET does not necessarily assure availability of guides to research aspirants. “The candidates should understand that PET is only a qualifying examination,“ he said.
A section of university authorities said the absence of a consensus on holding the exam online was the key reason behind the lapse. Other officials, however, said scrapping the online CET for post-graduate courses has resulted in the delay in PET.
When contacted, Bamu vice-chancellor B A Chopade said he would seek details of the exact reason behind the delay in conduct of PET.