Your neighbourhood college may soon get autonomy

Institute clusters on the anvil; examinations may be decentralised


The panel set up to recommend amendments to the Karnataka State Universities Act, 2000 is said to be keen on providing legal sanction for setting up such clusters to pave the way for decentralisation of education and lessen the burden on universities.

The Committee headed by former vice-chancellor of Bangalore University N R Shetty has revisited the various provisions of the 2000 Act and its implementation over the last nine years since the legislation came into force.

The cluster model, it was felt, would help in better faculty exchange programmes, besides decentralising the examination system. The overall monitoring of the colleges will continue to remain under the purview of the jurisdictional universities,  Committee sources told Deccan Herald.

The Committee is in the process of drafting its recommendations and would submit them to the government soon.

The panel is also in favour of a uniform Act for all universities in the state. At present, multiplicity of legislations govern various universities. The Committee plans to bring under a common legislation four different statutes - Karnataka State Universities Act, Visvesvaraya Technological University Act, Karnataka State Open University Act and Karnataka State Women’s University Act. However, provisions would be made to retain the distinct features of each university, the sources added.

The panel is keen that the government replace the Inter-University Board, the apex decision making body on higher education in the state, with State Council for Higher Education, with a higher composition of academicians.

A recommendation to this effect was first made by the Task Force on Higher Education headed by former Chairman of Atomic Energy Commission M R Srinivasan.

The committee is also contemplating restoring the ‘Senate’, an university body to take decisions on administrative matters, which was scrapped under the 2000 legislation.

The panel plans to retain the present process of constituting a search committee for shortlisting the names for the appointment of vice-chancellor. However, suitable amendments would be made to the provision to make it mandatory that only acadmecians are appointed as vice-chancellors, the sources added.

The panel is in favour of extending the tenure of V-Cs from the present four to five years. Another major recommendation that the committee is contemplating is to put in place a Grievance Redressal Mechanism with a view to bring greater efficiency, transparency and accountability in the functioning of universities, the sources said.

Recommendations

* Uniform legislation for all universities
* Direct appointment of officers by varsities; Revival of elections to university bodies
* Five-year tenure for V-Cs
* Only academicians as V-Cs
* State Council for Higher Education to replace Inter-University Board
* Constitution of grievance redressal tribunal
* Separate directorate for research

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