Ahoy Freshers! Welcome on board.
This being your very first week here, we understand that it might be a bit overwhelming for you. But amidst all the fun, drawing a boundary between what is ethical and what is not is very important. Remember the Code of Honour you signed a week back? We bring to you instances of violation of this Code of Honour and the following repercussions. We hope that this article serves as a lesson for you and helps you in making informed decisions.
So, starting with basics first. What is DisCo? Made famous by Chetan Bhagat’s book “Five Point Someone”, it is short for Disciplinary Committee. This committee consists of Professors and two student representatives, the SAC General Secretary and the CAIC General Secretary. Contrary to what the name sounds like, its not fun at all and you would definitely not like to be at the receiving end of it, at any point of time during your stay here. The last thing you want is your academic record to be tainted with disciplinary action. Why do you need to be aware? Because a disciplinary action against you will lead to a domino effect of problems in your upcoming few years. The effect of the severe repercussions is almost impossible to reverse. So, DisCos are mainly awarded for two major types of violations –
Academic Affairs, chaired by Dean Academics – for any kind of violation in academia.
Student Affairs, chaired by Dean of Student Affairs (DoSA) – for any kind of violation in personal conduct.
There is no fixed punishment for a type of misconduct. It is all decided by DisCo, depending on the severity of one’s act and the sternness of the professor. Let’s see the what accompanies any DisCo action –
Your won’t be allowed to hold any POR (Position of Responsibility) in your entire stay at IIT. All the present PORs will be taken away from you. So, why is this a problem? Because, say you want to go into any consultancy or non-core job, you will be in a disadvantageous position, with your CV blank in this field.
You will not be allowed to represent IIT Delhi anywhere, be it sports (Inter-IIT) or any other competition. Forget any technical club or any cultural club. You will never be able to present your talent outside IIT Delhi. Again,why is this a problem? Because you miss out on the opportunity to develop important life skills such as leadership and teamwork, as well as contributing to the activities of your favourite club.
You would be barred from applying for a Department Change. Now, as per the surveys we had conducted earlier, we know around 80% freshers come here with an aim of DepC. Get ready to see your dreams crumble if you want to indulge in any indiscipline.
You can be asked to withdraw from the semester, meaning that your degree definitely is getting extended. Also, your grade card will show “Disciplinary Withdrawal” on it for that semester. You will definitely have a hard time explaining this to anyone who sees your grade card.
You may not be able to avail hostel facilities at all throughout your stay here.
When you sit for placements, the companies are informed apriori of the disciplinary action against you, which means that your chances of selection are skewed. Most of the companies take any history of disciplinary action against you quite seriously and you might not just want to be at the receiving end.
At the end of a rigorous four/five years at this institute the formal degree is awarded to the students. A student who has been imposed with a DisCo isn’t ‘honoured’ with the degree like all his/her classmates but his certificate just mentions that the person has graduated from the institution. After all the effort you had put in to get admission in this institute,you definitely wouldn’t want a momentary lapse to take away all your glory.
These repercussions should already instill enough fear in you to bar you from breaking any rules here. So which offences should you not commit? Well anything and everything which isn’t in line with the honour code of the institute can lead to DisCo. Theoretically you can get DisCo even for littering (be careful though, you never know). The Institute’s Honour Code states the following as punishable offenses-
Copying from another’s examination paper or allowing another to copy from one’s own paper
Plagiarism of any form
Revising and resubmitting a marked quiz or examination paper for re-grading without the instructor’s knowledge and consent
Giving or receiving unpermitted aid on take-home examinations
Representing as one’s own work the work of another, including information available on the Internet; and giving or receiving aid on an academic assignment under circumstances in which a reasonable person should have known that such aid was not permitted
Committing a cyber offence, such as, breaking passwords and accounts, sharing passwords, electronic copying, planting viruses, etc.
The list isn’t very hard to digest. On some layer of consciousness we all very well understand that these acts are not something one reveres, and the culpability is also quite evident. You, before doing a task that can get you a taste of DisCo, will have an ominous feeling about it for sure. In such case, listen to your heart and don’t fall into the trap.
We bring to you the very recent instances of Disciplinary Action and some of the very infamous ones.
PLAGIARISM – As you should be already aware, the Professors are very strict when it comes to plagiarism. Now, what is plagiarism?
From your perspective, plagiarism might involve copying code/assignments from online sites, peers, seniors etc. But uptil now, you might have been in the idea of the mediocrity of plagiarism. Afterall copying was a norm everyone copied freely and no one ever said anything! This particular idea needs a big change while your stay at IIT. Plagiarism is dealt very strictly here and taking it lightly will lead to much more than DisCo.
With the professors have dedicated softwares for detecting any kind of plagiarism between your work, your peer’s work, your senior’s work or any online text (which is a little obvious, IITD being one of the country’s best technical institute!), you should BEWARE!
2018 – students were DisCo-ed for copying code from senior year. Not only were the students who copied the code punished, but the senior who had submitted the code previously was also punished.
2017 – case was raised for copying contents of an experiment of PYP100 from Google drive made by senior years. Severe warning was issued to all students involved.
2013 – 300 people were at the receiving end of DisCo for copying a COL100 assignment! So if you think that mass cheating will allow you to be let off, don’t be mistaken.
And believe us! The committee won’t listen to excuses like you didn’t know that someone had copied your code or any assignment. Be extremely careful while you work on the machines in the CSC, and always save your work only in the folder assigned to you. Also, never ever share your code even with your very best friend. Your “good” deed might land both of you in serious trouble.
CHEATING/COPYING IN EXAMINATION – One to one cheating, placing references elsewhere, say in washrooms, using mobile phones during exams etc. can all lead a Disciplinary hearing. This has been one of the most common reasons for DisCo after Plagiarism.
2018 – around 20 students faced DisCo action for completing a COL100 quiz from the comfort of their hostel rooms.
2018 – notes were found in the washroom and frequent washroom breaks by students was observed. Disciplinary committee took the offense very seriously.
2018 – a student was found using his cell phone amidst the major exam.
2017 – A student was punished for copying in Majors. His POR (one of those which take the blood, sweat and tears of students to achieve) was immediately taken away.
IMPERSONATION – marking someone else’s attendance in lectures, tutorials, quizzes (severe), minors (very very severe).
2018 – Students were punished for impersonation through Timble (app for marking attendance).
2018 – another case of impersonation in tutorials was dealt with strictly.
HACKING – Remember, if you think you are smart, the people sitting at the backend are 10 times smarter. They have been running the system for years and have seen all kinds of foul activities. They can track your location at each time of the day (by this we mean they can even distinguish if you were in the mess or common room of your hostel) and also find out which devices you have been using.
MEMES – Funny as they are, they definitely look anything but funny when you make(share) them on a professor and receive a DisCo action because of it. This comes under the category of unethical and immoral behaviour. In 2018 itself, 9 students were punished because of making and spreading memes on a professor through whatsapp. They were also threatened with police action.
HARASSMENT – Whether mental or sexual harassment, IITD has a super strict policy when it comes to this. For sexual harassment of women, there is a separate committee to deal with any case, which can be referred to Disciplinary Committee as well. Presently, the committee comprises of two student representatives from each of the girl’s hostel along with professors and police officers.
2017 – a case was registered against a student for body shaming a girl on facebook through a confessions page. This case should send shivers down your spine. Be ashamed of yourself if you ever dare to even think of body-shaming anyone. The trend of confessions page is very common in colleges and people are not afraid to post on them because of the anonymity. Nothing is anonymous when it comes to IITD.
POSSESSION OF ILLEGAL APPLIANCES – As you might already know, hostel residents aren’t allowed to keep air-conditioners or heaters as per the institute norms. Neither are they allowed to possess any motor vehicles. Although instances regarding disciplinary action being taken in these regards is unheard of, let us break this myth. In 2014 itself, a student was DisCo-ed for the possession of a heater. Hence, although the institute might have told you to “make yourself at home in your hostels”, don’t get too carried away.
SUBSTANCE ABUSE – drinking inside hostel premises, drugs and smoking are a very severe offense. Any person caught violating the set rules is subjected to a committee hearing and permanent monitoring by SCS. Parents of the student are also informed and are called to meet Dean of Student Affairs and IITD Counselor. Monetary fine is also imposed in some cases. A lot of stray incidents in different hostels had been discovered and punished accordingly by the Disciplinary committee.
MISINFORMATION IN TnP –
This offense is usually dealt with very strictly. When applying for training or placement, all CV points must have a valid proof. If they are found to be inconsistent with reality, it can lead to suspension from the placements altogether, along with Disciplinary Committee action. In the recent past, a student was barred from sitting in placements for forging proof documents for his CV.
Finally, the last piece of bone chilling information. If you find yourself to be lucky being let off with a Warning, stop! A warning simply means that the committee now has authority to put you under DisCo even if you are found involved in something fishy, whether or not you were indeed at fault.
Also, take this opportunity to educate yourselves with Double DisCo as well. If any student is found violating any of the restrictions set by the institute after facing a Disciplinary Action, a double DisCo is imposed, the repercussions of which are worse than that of a DisCo. In the recent years itself, there has been a case, amongst many others, in which a student was Double Disco-ed for representing IIT despite having a DisCo.
In a nutshell, any violation of the IITD Honour code can hypothetically see you at the receiving end of a DISCO. Now there are two options in front of you. Either fall in the pit and learn or learn from others mistakes. The choice is up to you and we hope you make a wise choice.
DISCLAIMER : All instances stated in this article are true to the knowledge of the BSP. They solely serve to educate our readers and encourage them to learn from their seniors so that they are not subject to disciplinary action in the future. No disrespect is intended on any of the students who may have been a part of these instances.
Article by : Nilabjo Dey, Priyanshu Gautam, Ritvik Ranjan, Shreya Johri