BCU to be developed as urban-centric varsity

University to launch course in urban planning

BCU to be developed as urban-centric varsity

Bengaluru Central University (BCU), which was formed after Bangalore University (BU) was trifurcated is to be developed as a metropolitan university that will cater to the needs of the city.

Professor S Japhet, the first Vice-Chancellor of the new varsity announced this at a press conference here on Wednesday. The new university will function from the Central College campus.

After consulting experts from Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), Delhi University (DU), and several universities in Karnataka, a draft vision document has been created. The document will be discussed with principals and students of affiliated colleges. It will also be uploaded on the university website, once launched.

At present, BCU has eight departments and 243 affiliated colleges. Next year, they intend to add at least 15 new departments. Expert committees have been constituted to consider creating ‘schools of studies’ such as a School of Law and Policy and School of Literature, among others. 

Prof Japhet said that they are keen on introducing a course on Urban Studies which will cover urban planning and governance issues of the city, and another one on cinema studies.

However, the university has not yet received the funds required to implement its plans. The state government has promised it Rs 5 crore and the parent university is to provide Rs 10 crore. BCU will also get an additional Rs 2 to Rs 3 crore as affiliation fee. As of now, they have only received Rs 3 crore from BU.

Prof Japhet said that he had initially submitted a proposal for Rs 873 crore to the state government for the development of the university. Later, he submitted another proposal, asking the government to at least promise to provide Rs 300 crore, in phases, and sanction 300 faculty posts. He said, “If the government provides Rs 300 crores, we are confident that we can mobilise another Rs 200 crores through means such as CSR fundings and donations. A few organisations and individuals have expressed interest.”

The heritage buildings on the Central College campus are in urgent need of repairs and this work requires at least Rs 25 crores, the VC said.  For the buildings to be ready before the next academic year, work has to start immediately.

Handover of title deeds, and a government order to transfer affiliated colleges in its jurisdiction from BU to the new university has not been issued yet. These processes are expected to be completed in a week or two.

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