Provide autonomy with steps to ensure accountability for institutions of higher learning

Adequate Progress

The BJP government revised the Guidelines for Autonomous Colleges in April 2016. Now, the university has to decide on the application for autonomous status by affiliated colleges within 3 months. In case, the university fails to reach a decision, it will be presumed that the university has no objection to granting the autonomous status. The number of autonomous colleges in India has gone up from 487 in 2014 to 595 in 2017. This is an important measure taken by MHRD.

The IIM Bill 2017, pending in the Lok Sabha, proposes to provide IIMs with the power to appoint their own Directors and Chairpersons. The bill is designed to increase the autonomy of IIMs.

The performance against this promise has been classified as “Adequate Progress” since the IIM Bill has only been tabled thus far and it remains to be seen whether Parliament passes the bill.

However, it deserves to be mentioned that multiple senior position holders in Indian Universities including Dr. Amartya Sen and George Deo (Both from Nalanda University), RK Shevgaonkar (IIT Delhi) and Anil Kakodkar (IIT Bombay) have resigned since 2014 citing attack on autonomy and disagreements with the BJP government amid other reasons.

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