Many parents and students have complained about the alleged mismanaged attendance system of SVKM Mithibai College (Vile Parle) claiming that despite meeting the attendance criteria, students are wrongly marked for low attendance.
The Viral Video
A video has been doing rounds on social media, which shows parents engaged in a heated discussion with the college officials. A parent in particular is seen to be waving some papers and questioning the attendance system while others in the class seem to be supporting his argument. It appears that the parents had gathered for a meeting in the college to discuss this pressing issue. The parents are seated inside a classroom.
Two Sides Of The Story
According to some students that The FPJ spoke to, the attendance system does not seem full proof “We have been wrongly given low attendance by the management even though we attended enough classes to cross the 60 per cent mark that the college requires us to,” said one.
Some students said that they were promised a cover-up of their low attendance if they took part in extra co-curricular activities like sports or cultural events “but that promise is also not kept,” a student said.
The principal of the college, Krutika Desai termed the video as ‘highly unethical’ and said, “There is no mismanagement from our side. Our attendance system is perfectly fine. It was very unethical for the students to record a video of what is happening in the classroom.”
Another first year BA student said, “Both the first and second defaulters list were released late because of which there is no time for us to correct our attendance. I have been wrongly given low attendance even when I attended almost all the classes.”
There have also been instances of students losing out a year because of low attendance. “I was having a lot of health issues and was also admitted to the hospital but the management refused to entertain my request. I showed them doctors reports as well but that was also of no use. I was asked to enrol again in the first year and currently, I am just a college dropout,” said an ex-student of the college who did not want to be identified.
Earlier in 2020, Mithibai was in the news for debarring 551 students due to low attendance. Students filed a petition against the college in the Supreme Court but the apex court ruled in the college’s favour, stating that what the students were demanding would set a wrong precedence.
Attendance is an age-old issue in colleges. While in genuine cases where students’ time is pulled out for other curricular activities or grave Ill health issues, consideration should ideally be given. But other times it make perfect sense for students to attend lectures - finally they have enrolled into a college for that very purpose.
Just as we were about the publish this story, the parent on the video called The FPJ and said that the video was leaked from his daughter’s phone by mistake and he never wanted it to happen. He said he has apologised to the institute.