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BDU poised to save on expenditure

Bharathidasan University has 10 constituent colleges in its fold.File PhotoM_Moorthy

Bharathidasan University, which has 10 constituent colleges in its fold, is poised to cut down substantial expenditure towards payment of staff salaries in the wake of the latest decision of the Higher Education Department to complete the process of converting such institutions into government colleges in the coming months.

Bharathidasan University has the highest number of constituent colleges among State Universities in Tamil Nadu. Post-conversion, the need for the university to meet the recurring expenditure of Rs. 15 to Rs. 20 crore per year will be obviated, Vice-Chancellor P. Manisankar said.

The State Government met the cost of salaries of guest lecturers appointed in these colleges for the first five years. For the subsequent five years, the universities had been meeting the expenditure out of its own funds, Prof. Manisankar said.

At a review meeting attended by Vice-Chancellors and Registrars, which was chaired by Higher Education Principal Secretary Sunil Paliwal, July 2 was set as deadline for submitting the Action Taken Report on the conversion process. The VCs were asked to follow instructions on three aspects: no introduction of new courses, status quo on designation of the staff, and collection of only government fee in the constituent colleges.

The matter will be discussed again in the next review meeting with VCs and Registrars to be held on July 16.

The department has instructed the Director of Collegiate Education and Regional Joint Directors to work out requirement of teaching and non-teaching staff for courses offered in constituent colleges as per norms for government colleges based on details furnished by the universities. The universities have been instructed to accommodate regular teaching and non-teaching staff in the constituent colleges in university departments and administration. All temporary staff will be permitted to work in the government colleges till their posts are filled up with regular staff by the government.

The participants of the review meeting were informed during the meeting that except Bharathiar, Algappa and Madras universities, others with NAAC score of less than 3.26 out of four have become ineligible to offer distance education programs.

Bharathidasan University, Prof. Manisankar said, was looking forward to improving its ranking in the next cycle of re-accreditation, so as to be in a position to continue offering distance education programs without any hitch.

In the last cycle in 2013, the BDU had obtained a score of 3.16 and 'A' Grade. But, only universities with A + Grade (3.26 to 3.50) and A++ Grade (3.50 to 4.00) are eligible to offer distance education program, as per the UGC's decision communicated earlier this year.

Bharathidasan University, which depends heavily on revenue generated through distance education programs, has found a reprieve in the UGC (ODL) 2nd amendment Regulation 2018, which states that universities permitted to offer Open and Distance Education Learning for 17-18 can continue doing so till 2019-20 to reach NAAC Benchmark.


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