The Congress on Wednesday accused the BJP government at the Centre of discriminating Gujarat on the issue of granting autonomy to higher educational institutions.
Congress spokesperson Manish Doshi said that out of the 60 government and private universities and other higher educational institutions that were granted autonomy by the University Grants Commission on Tuesday, only one — Pandit Deendayal Petroleum University — is from Gujarat, while in neighbouring BJP-ruled Maharashtra as many as 16 institutions were granted autonomy.
Doshi said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi always accused the Congress-led UPA government of being biased against Gujarat in every matter. “But is it justice to give autonomous status to only one institution from Gujarat when the neighbouring Maharashtra’s 16 institutions get autonomous status,” Doshi asked.
He said that the UGC’s decision has deprived many higher educational institutions of Gujarat from getting benefits under autonomy and students from getting better quality of education.
The autonomous universities will have the freedom to start new courses, off campus centres, skill development centres, research centres and other academic programmes, to hire foreign faculty, enrol foreign students and enter into academic collaborations without UGC’s permission. The autonomous colleges will also be free to prepare their own syllabi, hold examinations as well as declare results.