Split Bangalore University into five varsities: Expert panel

Says move will spare students travel time, help administration

Split Bangalore University into five varsities: Expert panel

Bangalore University (BU) will be split into five varsities if the recommendations of an expert committee constituted by the government are implemented.

The seven-member committee of experts, with experience of more than 50 years in education, has suggested that the university be split into: Bangalore University North, Bangalore University South, Bangalore University East and Bangalore University West. The fifth, UVCE (University Visvesvaraya College of Engineering), should be considered a special institution.

The committee includes K R Venugopal, principal of UVCE, N R Shetty, former V-C of Bangalore University, T V Mohandas Pai, chairman of Manipal Global Education, N Rudraiah, former V-C of Gulbarga University, K R S Murthy, former director of IIM-B, R Natarajan, former director of AICTE and former chairman of AICTE, and K Narahari, former professor in BMS College. 

BU has 614 affiliated colleges, 3.5 lakh students and 21 lakh answerscripts every semester. The university has to grapple with delay in results due to deferments in the academic calendar.

Out of these, there are about 42 in Kolar, 25 in Ramanagar and 25 in Chikkaballapur. The rest of the colleges are all concentrated in Bangalore.

The members had a challenge: To split the university geographically, without alienating any institution. Naming each varsity ‘Bangalore University’ followed by its geographical location is aimed at retaining the sense of belonging to the place.

Speaking to Deccan Herald, one of the experts said this proposal was similar to what University of London had adopted. If the Gross Enrolment Ratio had to be increased to 30 per cent from the present 18 per cent, there should be more universities and colleges.

For this, it is imperative that the varsity is split according to geographical locations, the experts felt. This will ensure that students, especially girls, do not drop out only because of long distance travel to colleges.

“At present, the university V-C has little control over the affiliated institutions. It is humanly impossible to monitor a 150-km stretch between Bagepalli and Channapatna on the one hand and Nelamangala and Anekal on the other. Breaking it into smaller units will make it easy for students who are at present stressed with too much travel. It will be easier for administration as well,” an expert in the committee told Deccan Herald.

The UVCE was established in 1917 and is nearing the centenary. Engineering colleges established around that time in the country have been upgraded into IITs or universities. The committee has decided to retain this college as a special institution to ensure that there is enough funding.

At present, UVCE is under Bangalore University and is dependent on them for funding.

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