Centre's decision 'final' over IIMs, proposes HRD

Centre's decision 'final' over IIMs, proposes HRD
The HRD ministry has sought vast powers over IIMs in its draft bill on their functioning, a move that is unlikely to go down well with academicians and others concerned with the autonomy of these prestigious institutes.

"Without prejudice to the foregoing provisions of this Act, the Institute (IIMs) shall, for efficient administration of this Act, be bound by such directions on questions of policy, as the Central Government may give in writing to it from time to time," a provision of the draft IIM Bill, 2015 says.

"The decision of the Central Government whether a question is one of policy or not, shall be final," it adds. The draft bill has been put out by the ministry to seek public opinion and can undergo changes.

The bill, though, says the Board of Governors of each IIM will be the "principal executive body" but goes on to grant the central government powers which it may use to overide the board.

The Board may, with the approval of the central government, make regulations and the rules to carry out the provisions of this Act regarding tenure, remuneration and terms and conditions of employees of institutes, it said.

The draft bill makes it clear that the Board can take a decision on matters like fees, emoluments and service conditions only with the Centre's approval.
The ministry says the bill will declare certain institutes of management to be institutions of national importance with a view to "empower these institutions to attain standards of global excellence in management, management research and allied areas of knowledge..."

Reacting strongly, DUTA President Nandita Narain said she was against any provision which further erodes the autonomy of IIMs and these institutes should have complete autonomy in academic matters and deciding on their courses and faculty members.

However, she added that financial matters like fee structure and emoluments should be regulated as these are public-funded bodies.
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