Published: 21st August 2019
Rules for private varsities too generic and low in specifics, say disappointed academicians
Deemed Universities, for example, are allowed to have a maximum of five off-campuses. But in the absence of any specific guidelines, there is an apprehension that there could be mushrooming of PUs
Even with all criticisms and protests against the Telangana State Private Universities (Establishment and Regulation Act) 2018, which came into force on July 15, the State Government issued notification pertaining to the rules for setting up of the Private Universities in the state, on Tuesday.
Like the bill, the TSPU regulations too, according to academicians have many loopholes, are generic and low in specifics and will, in the long run, turn these universities into degree minting institutions. Srini Bhupalam, vice president, All India Federation of Self Financing Professional Institutions said that since regulations are too generic and low in specifics it could lead to a lot of political play and legal tangles down the road. "I don't see a great vision, purpose or good to the students of Telangana in the regulations of PU's. Its disappointing that the Government did not mandate that PU's are required to get approvals from concerning regulatory bodies like AICTE, PCI, NCERT, Nursing etc.," he said and added that had the government mandated concerning regulatory bodies approval, it would have given confidence to students/parents and at the same time adds another layer of scrutiny to alleviate future problems. Another problematic aspect is that there is no mention about the off campuses of approved PU's.
Deemed Universities, for example, are allowed to have a maximum of five off-campuses. But in the absence of any specific guidelines, there is an apprehension that there could be mushrooming of PUs. RVK Rao, chairman St May's Group of Institutions also a critic of the move to bring in PUs in the state said that when already existing private varsities were not following the guidelines, bringing in new ones will only further degrade the quality of education in the state.
"This Act is also against draft National Education Policy 2019 which proposes multidisciplinary educational institutions that can cater to 5,000 -50,000 students For such a big number of students land required would be 150-200 acres," he said. Under the TSPU, land requirement is a paltry 20 acre and 30 acre under HMD and outside it, respectively, while the administrative and academic buildings have to be on 1000-10,000sq meters respectively. Further, a PU has to show a corpus fund of Rs10 cr and another RS 30cr in form of fixed deposit at the time of starting the university.
"Both the land requirement and corpus fund are less considering we are talking about universities," said V Balakrishna Reddy, President Technical Institutions Employees Association. Parents too are unhappy that the foray of PYU will make education unaffordable for poor more so when the government slashed the local reservation quota from 50 to 25 per cent. Nagati Narayana, Telangana Parents Association has called for the amendment of GO 26 to provide 50 per cent seats to local students along with a provision for fee regulation in the PUs.