The Human Resource Development Minister Kapil Sibal has called for the need to end political interence in the appointment of Vice Chancellors of universities. He said the education system in the country would evolve only if such practices were stopped. The minister was speaking at the national conference of vice – chancellors in New Delhi.
“Vice Chancellors are appointed at the instance of the political establishment. This must end. If we really want our system to thrive, then the academic world should be left free to its own devices in the hope that you create a future for the country,’’ Sibal told Vice Chancellors of universities from across the country.
Sibal also mooted that the university system must allow mobility to students. The university system needs to rise up from the current approach of limiting itself to teaching in specific streams as also limiting students to availing courses that are available only in their institutions, he said. Sibal stressed on the need of transparency and accountability in the system where students should also be allowed to assess teachers, “Germination of ideas takes place through the university system. If the university system is not effervescent, energetic, creative, then you would be relegated to the knowledge of the past,” he said.
On the topic of foreign academic collaborations, Sibal said that there is enormous interest amongst foreign universities in collaborating with the Indian universities or setting up their institutions here. He mentioned the research opportunities particularly are the drawing factor for foreign institutions.
Advocating for a fundamental shift in the higher education set up, Sibal envisioned an atmosphere that allows greater student mobility and an academic world that has the freedom to chart its own future. Underlining the need for uniformity in access to education, he said that universities must create a financial, social, economic structure which facilitates access to students.
The vice chancellors conference would seek to identify development issues, challenges and reform agenda in higher education for the 12th Five Year Plan Period.
[Source: The Hindu]