BENGALURU: During the 53rd annual convocation of Bangalore University held on Thursday, most students were unhappy that they were conferred with certificates and cash award instead of gold medals. Of the total 268 gold medals, university converted 111 gold medals into cash awards.
“In the notification issued on the university website and the communication made to colleges, we are entitled to gold medals. But, it was shocking when they gave us cash awards and just certificates,” said Shweta, entitled to a gold medal for her performance in MA in Old Kannada Literature.
Yakuma K P, who bagged two gold medals in Economics and Political science in her undergraduate course, said, “This is the way the university honours toppers. There is no value for our efforts. Why can’t they give us gold medals.”
The other feature of this convocation that left a bitter taste was the varsity giving out wrongly attributed certificates. In one case, that of Sujith from Seshadripuram college, the certificate he should have received for best outgoing sports person of the university was instead printed as one for highest marks in B.Com. Several other students too suffered from such a blunder. Sujith, who has represented the university at national level four times in net ball, said, “I need to be recognised for what I have achieved. Why should I need this certificate for highest marks in B.Com? Let them issue fresh certificate, or I don’t need it.”
The varsity defended withdrawal of gold medals saying the decision of converting gold medals into cash awards was taken in the syndicate and academic council meetings. Dr Sudesh, in-charge VC said, “It has been decided in the syndicate to convert gold medals into cash awards in the cases where the interest amount received from the amount contributed by donors is very less. There are cases where interest amount we are receiving from the amount instituted by donors is `73. In such cases how can we give gold medals? So, we have made all such gold medals into cash awards and gave `500 to students.”
As for blunders in the certificates, although the varsity officials were defensive when confronted by the students, they subsequently relented. In-charge VC Dr Sudesh, registrar administration Prof B K Ravi and registrar evaluation Prof Shivarju assured the students that fresh certificates would be issued within three days.