New Delhi: The recently issued notification by UGC inviting application for MANF scholarship has multiple issues in it, Labeed Shafi, National President, Students Islamic Organisation of India (SIO) said. One major issue is that the call for MANF scholarship is being regularly skipped, the last notification issued was in 2018 and before that in 2016. The various targeted scholarships for different communities are to end their socio-historical marginalization. However UGC has been regularly skipping annual call for MANF and every new notification is for the immediately previous year and does not retrospectively include seats for the intervening years, effectively rendering the seats lapsed. It reeks of targeted and systematic discrimination against minorities students, Shafi added.

Along with it, the number of seats offered under MANF (1000 seats) is very low, considering the sheer size of the minorities’ population, it must be increased to at least 5000 seats annually. There must also be retrospectively inclusion of the skipped seats without limiting it to candidates qualifying from any one particular year. Further, the UGC-NET requirement for eligibility for MANF and RGNF must be removed, Shafi demanded.