Racial discrimination at Harvard University: Indian, Asian groups file complaint



By NewsGram Staff Writer

In a bid to control racial bias in the admission process, a coalition of more than 60 Asian-American groups have filed a complaint with the US justice and education department .The compliant asked for “immediately cease and desist from using racial quota or racial balancing” to admit students.

The complaint, 50-page long, alleged that “Harvard University has engaged illegally in direct discrimination against Asian-American applicants by using stereotypes and racial bias in its subjective ‘Holistic Evaluation Approach’ and racial quota/rebalancing”.

According to Yukong Zhao, one of the chief organisers, the complaint has the support of a number of Chinese, Korean, Indian and Pakistani-American groups.

“We want to eliminate discrimination of Asian Americans, and we want procedural justice for all racial groups,” Zhao told NBC News. “All racial groups should be treated equal.”

The coalition includes the Global Organisation of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO), National Federation of Indian American Associations, BIT Sindri Alumni Association of North India, and American Society of Engineers of Indian Origin, representing Indian groups. Other groups include the Chinese-American Association of Orange county in California, and the Pakistani Policy Institute in New York.

The petition also accused the university of using race as a major factor for admission beyond what is allowed by relevant Supreme Court decisions.

Reportedly, the number of Asian-American students admitted annually has not been at par with the increase in the Asian-American population.

However, denying all charges, Harvard University General Counsel Robert Iuliano said in a written statement that the percentage of Asian Americans in the university increased from 17.6 percent to 21 percent in the last decade.

“The college’s admissions policies are fully compliant with the law and are essential to the pedagogical objectives that underlie its educational mission,” Luliano said.

Harvard has faced allegations of using race in its admissions process in the past too.