Autonomy demand on top of IIT council meeting agenda

Autonomy demand on top of IIT council meeting agenda

HRD minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank will chair the meeting of the IIT council. PTI Photo

The demand of the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) for greater financial and administrative autonomy like those granted to the Indian Institute of Management (IIMs) is one of the top agendas of the meeting of the council of the premier technical institutes to be held on Friday.

The Human Resource Development (HRD) ministry's proposal to allow under-performing IIT students exit four year B Tech programme after the third year with a BSc in Engineering degree will also be discussed at the meeting and a decision will be taken.

HRD minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank will chair the meeting of the IIT council.

The IIMs got degree-granting powers and greater autonomy after Parliament passed a bill in this regard during the previous regime of the Modi government.

The IIM Act, which came on January 31, 2018, provides the 20 premier B-Schools unprecedented levels of autonomy.

While the Act has reduced the government interference in the day-to-day functioning of the IIMs, it vests into them powers to appoint their own chairmen and directors. The government's representation on the board of each the IIMs has significantly gone down.

“The issue of the autonomy of the IITs has been in discussion for quite some time. The issue will be discussed at the meeting and a decision will be taken,” a Ministry official said.

On the proposal to allow under-performing BTech students exit with Bsc, the official said it seeks to bring relief to students who had to drop out from the IITs for various reasons.

“If the council approves the proposal, such students will come out of the IITs with a BSc in Engineering degree, instead of getting nothing,” the official added.

As many as 2,461 students dropped out of different IITs in the last two years across B Tech and post-graduate programmes for various reasons including expulsion from the institute due to poor academic performance.

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