Acharya calls for set policy on creating new varsities

Minister of Higher Education V S Acharya has expressed his concern over the quality of education offered by the universities in the State.

Inaugurating a seminar on ‘Planning and Administering Universities in Karnataka’, organised by the Karnataka State Higher Education Council and the Centre for Educational and Social Studies (CESS) here on Saturday, he said there was a need for a set policy for creating new varsities.

“Bifurcating a university, dividing the assets and liabilities between a parent university and a new varsity, and providing additional staff and funds for the new varsity are the issues to be tackled,” he said.

At variance

Stating that the process of funding by the State and the Centre was at variance with the requirements of the varsities, he said the institutes of higher education in Karnataka were facing several problems.

“Particularly, the newly formed varsities are facing problems such as sanction of land, infrastructure development, including power and water supply, appointment of staff, lack of funds for construction of buildings, laboratory equipment and purchase of books,” he said.

There were also problems with regard to organisation, including the mode of selection of a vice chancellor and other statutory bodies, Acharya said.

The minister said the percentage of enrolment of youth for higher education in the country was worrisome as it was much below the world average of 23 per cent.

“This low enrolment ratio does not augur well for a country like India, which boasts of  achievements in space, atomic energy, information technology, biotechnology and other fields,” he said.

K V Krishna Bhat, MLC and president, CESS, said admissions to some of the courses in basic sciences had come down drastically. “Infrastructure is available for courses like bio-sciences, but there is a shortage of staff and faculty. A few courses have adequate staff and faculty, but there are no takers,” he said.

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