What Unites Delhi University? Its Elitism

August 4, 2022

While the academic credentials of DU can hardly be questioned as a premier institution of knowledge, I found its social profile highly skewed. Most people who make it here are from middle to upper-class backgrounds and, as caste has a certain relation to one’s class, upper caste.


The entire three years I spent in my Bachelors doing History Hons. at Ramjas College, DU, was a hard-hitting lesson in the inequities of the society...

It has disproportionately few hostels, letting landlords  reap a profitable business out of rent harvesting. The hostels are also expensive. It can be daunting for a first-generation learner.

Expensive Hostels

What Unites DU?

In classrooms, students from well-off backgrounds clustered in the first row; the middling ones in the middle row and; the most marginalised ones such as those opting courses in Hindi medium, were to be found in the third row.

As can be anticipated, there was minimal interaction between these three rows. What was ironic was the near total apathy of the privileged students towards the less privileged.

The Hypocrisy

Theory Vs Praxis

And what was infuriating was the mutual incompatibility of the progressive ideas many of these privileged students held, in consonance with the intellectual requirements of the university and the faithful adherents of the status quo that they were.

The class divide at DU is a wide chasm; the privileged classes there have the onus and the responsibility to recognise their class (and, at times, caste) privilege and give space to the less privileged.