North-East students make admission process simpler for persons from their States
“We recognise them instantly. We know who they are from the way they talk, walk and dress. The other factor is, of course, their face,” says Jaifunj, who is wearing beige shorts, a black T-shirt and a smile that never leaves his face despite the intense mid-morning sun at Delhi University on Day Eight of admissions on Tuesday.
Jaifunj is from Assam and a student of Delhi University for two years now. He had a harrowing time going around the university trying to get everything right when he was applying for admission, so he decided to make it his business to help other students from his State who come here for admissions.
“They have the same queries I used to have — how to fill out the form and get around the university. They hesitate to ask other people because they think they will be made fun of since they speak differently,” he says, before admitting: “It is they who recognise me most of the time. I look as Assamese as you can look.”
His friend Birsj Mushahary agrees. “The entire North-East people look the same to the people here in Delhi, but only we can recognise who is Assamese or Manipuri or from Nagaland.” He says they have an organisation, Bodoland House, which usually helps people from Assam, counsels them about the courses and the topography of Delhi University.
A few feet away sitting on some steps leading up to the building that is giving away application forms for the Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes is Roveri and his brother.
“We have different tribes in Nagaland and most of us come under the Scheduled Tribes quota. We have our own people here to help us out,” says Roveri, adding that since his brother was already a student of Kirori Mal College he was not keen on going to any other college.
Walking briskly ahead of her husband and daughter is an elegant Ms. Jamir, who says they would have been lost and “moving around like fools” if it had not been for “those nice students who gave them all the information they needed even though they were not from Nagaland.” The family is from Manipur and the daughter has good scores. St. Stephen's College or Lady Shri Ram College are the daughter's preferred choices. Ms. Jamir says she is especially grateful for the additional quota that she is entitled to.
The crowds just outside the Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes registration counters are overwhelming, there is hardly any space to weave your way forward and the noise is deafening. Amid the chaos is a white counter with “NSUD” painted on it. There are several smiling girls and boys from the North-East who cheerfully answer questions. “The NSUD is an organisation of Nagaland students but we help all the States from the North-East. We have seen six admission seasons. We are here from the beginning and stick around till the admission closes completely,” says J. Maivio.
Their tasks are divided he says — some answer queries and some just go around the campus and bring back confused and clueless students. “Our first task is to make them open to different colleges in the university. They are fixed about certain colleges, without thinking of their scores and the feasibility of getting admissions. Our next task is to acquaint them with the geography of the college, course and the cut-offs they can expect,” he says, adding they usually encourage them to opt for every college in the university and counsel them about extra-curricular activities and sports quota. “Our people are usually good at sports, especially basket ball and usually do not know about the sports quota.”