Delhi University VC makes his case for shift to four-year undergraduate courses

Dinesh SinghDinesh Singh

In this Walk the Talk on NDTV 24x7 with The Indian Express Editor-in-Chief Shekhar Gupta, Delhi University Vice-Chancellor Dinesh Singh makes his case for the shift to four-year undergraduate courses and says there was "no railroading"

I am at Delhi University's Vice-Chancellor's office and my guest today is eminent mathematician Prof Dinesh Singh. It is one thing to teach mathematics, it's quite another to balance all these complex equations of politics, policy and change.

I agree with you entirely. It's almost impossible to do that but there is a mathematical theory called complexity theory. Maybe that will help me.

How does that help? Explain that to somebody who never got more than 33 in math and gave up from Class 10 on.

It's not mathematics that works here in the university. It's really about administering a large institution in which there are all kinds of pulls, pressures, needs, requirements and, really, balance. One needs to balance all of these so that the the university moves in the right direction. The symbol that represents this university is an elephant. And India also is often regarded as an elephant.

You are not getting into the beehive equation just now...

No... One of my predecessors used to say that (the university) is like the republic of India. And it is. But then the republic is also moving in some ways and so are we.

You have the advantage of being a mathematician. And mathematics has the beauty and elegance of logic. So use that power of logic and your mathematical training to explain the new four-year-degree course to me. Because that is the new sort of war that has broken out right now.

Unfortunately, it seems to appear that there is a war. It's happening more outside the university, not as much inside. If you look at systems within the university, they are working in harmony. Our institutions—the academic council, the executive council, our faculty bodies—all of them are working in harmony to create this system. So there is not so much trouble here. But as luck would have it, many external forces seem to be interested in what is happening and there are some here also.

... contd.

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