Govt-appointed panel flags issue about campus politics

RSTV Bureau
FILE: New Delhi: File photo of JNU teachers & students form a human chain inside the campus in protest against arrest of JNUSU President Kanhaiya Kumar, in New Delhi on Sunday, Feb 14, 2016. Photo - PTI

FILE: New Delhi: File photo of JNU teachers & students form a human chain inside the campus in protest against arrest of JNUSU President Kanhaiya Kumar, in New Delhi on Sunday, Feb 14, 2016.
Photo – PTI

A panel appinted by the Union HRD ministry had advocated to deliberate whether the units/outfits of political parties or groups based on caste or communities be permitted on university campuses. Among a host of other recommendations, the Committee headed by former Cabinet Secretary TSR Subramanian has suggested that political activity on campuses should not affect academic activity.

The central government-appointed panel’s recommendation has come in the backdrop of the controversies surrounding JNU and Hyderabad Central University. Union HRD ministry had come under criticism in both the incidents.

“The Committee recommends a careful and non-emotional examination of the issue of permitting chapters of national political parties, or caste/community based organizations within campuses of universities,” said the panel appointed by the HRD ministry in its report for making recommendations for evolution of a New Education Policy (NEP). The report was recently submitted to the Union ministry.

At present, BJP-linked ABVP, Congress-associated NSUI and Left parties-backed AISA, SFI are active active on campuses across the country. Off-late few other student outfits owing allegiance to regional parties too have come up.

FILE: Hyderabad: Students of various universities and colleges during a protest over Rohith Vemula's suicide at Hyderabad Central University campus in Hyderabad on Monday, Jan 26, 2016.  Photo-PTI

FILE: Hyderabad: Students of various universities and colleges during a protest over Rohith Vemula’s suicide at Hyderabad Central University campus in Hyderabad on Monday, Jan 26, 2016.
Photo-PTI

The centre appointed-panel also sought a debate on the “desirability of allowing students to continue in campuses for long periods, even after the normal schedules for each courses, or preparation of working for PhD etc is over.”

“The Committee recognizes the great importance of unfettered generation of ideas, free speech and association in university campuses; it wishes to draw the impact in many circumstances of these on the rights of the students who are keen to pursue their academic goals in a time bound manner, in which they have invested heavily in time, energy and emotions,” the panel said in its report.

Another key recommendation of the panel is that there should be one unified national level examination for admission to each type of professional course be it engineering, architecture, management or other streams to save the students from applying in multiple exams.

“There is clear need to rationalize the system of entrance examinations to professional courses. A note needs to be taken of the recent decision of the Supreme Court to have national common admission tests for medical institutions in the country,” the Committee said.

PTI