Why the hurry over 4-yr degree: PM

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh wants to know why Delhi University was in a hurry to extend the three-year Bachelor’s degree programme to four years and will get the matter examined, CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury said on Tuesday.

Singh assured a delegation of Left and other MPs that he would get the matter looked into, Yechury said after the meeting in Parliament.

When the delegation submitted a signed memorandum on the issue seeking his intervention to defer the implementation of the four-year course decision, the Prime Minister asked “why are they in a hurry” to implement it, the CPI(M) leader said, adding that “we told him that this will be highly disruptive. Why will a student come to DU if he or she can do a bachelor’s course in three years elsewhere,” Yechury asked, while maintaining that any major change in the course pattern ought to be discussed in Parliament as DU has been established through an Act of Parliament.

Yechury, who has moved a special mention on the issue in Rajya Sabha, objected to the hasty manner in which DU was trying to implement the four-year system from July and said the move “has not been properly thought through.”

He said it also violated the guidelines of the University Grants Commission as it is mandatory that changes in the course structure have to get its nod.

“The four-year programme is being implemented in undue haste and without proper consultation with teachers who are legitimately concerned about the dilution of quality,” the memorandum signed by almost 40 MPs from various parties said.

It also said that no provision has been made for additional infrastructure or teaching posts for the extra year, with over 4,000 teaching posts already vacant.

The MPs demanded the Prime Minister’s intervention to defer the implementation of the proposed four-year course before its ramifications were thoroughly examined through “wider debate and consultation.” 

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