BU panel member quits over irregularities in affiliations

BU panel member quits over irregularities in affiliations

Trouble is brewing again at Bangalore University, this time over the renewal of quality specifications for its affiliated colleges.

Academic Council member Jyothi Vijay, the chairman of a committee constituted to set up new tools for evaluation and draft new rules, has resigned after claiming that there have been irregularities in the affiliation process. Tendering her resignation on March 26, she also claimed that the university had failed to re-examine the affiliation process due to ‘vested interests’ at work.

Vijay had recently developed a set of quantitative analysis process to evaluate the quality of the BU-affiliated colleges. If her system was followed, Bangalore University would become obligated to grade its affiliated colleges based on specific parameters.

Those which did not meet the minimum eligibility risk being disaffiliated. Vijay claims that this recommendation had been opposed by the university’s Syndicate (the top decision-making body), as a few members felt her propositions were too stringent.

VC responds

Speaking to Deccan Herald about the issue, Vice Chancellor Thimme Gowda said the university cannot be ruthless about disaffiliating colleges. “Shutting down institutions would deny many students access to higher education. What we are doing is not a CBI investigation. We should give them time to improve. We cannot quantify the grading of colleges to assess their quality. The university will consider implementing these recommendations for the next year,” he said.

According to Vijay, what prompted her resignation was that the university, after investing an entire year in setting up several committees for the process, did not take action against any of the irregularities which were reported.

Even though Gowda himself set up this committee to draft new rules for assessing colleges, Vijay was also told that the draft would undergo changes using the intervention of the Syndicate members who had opposed the recommendation.

Report ignored

In December 2011, reports by the university’s Local Inquiry Committee about the quality of colleges were found to be flawed.

To rectify this, the then vice chancellor Prabhu Dev set up a Task Force to re-inspect several colleges. “The university has to this day not implemented those recommendations either — in spite of a State government’s direction to do the same,” Vijay said.

When asked about the delays in acting on the Task Force’s report, Gowda said there were too many committee reports and he did not want to go about disaffiliating colleges on the basis of reports provided by committees constituted before his arrival.

“I want to constitute another impartial committee involving outsiders to verify all these reports. It is the matter of students’ future.”

Several Academic Council and Syndicate members have expressed their dissatisfaction over Gowda’s approach as this would only mean the existing blacklisted colleges will gain another year’s time to function in the same state of affairs.

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