CPM waves green flag for private universities in Kerala

PK Manikantan

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Representative Image | Photo: Mathrubhumi

Thiruvananthapuram: CPM has waved its green flag to permit deemed-to-be universities in Kerala. The move comes as a major deviation from the Left policy outlook of discouraging private sector intervention in education sector.

For permitting deemed-to-be universities, ‘Kerala State Private University Bill’ will be brought.

The matter came into discussion during a special workshop pertaining to reforms in higher education sector that happened at EMS Academy. Teachers associations including AKGCT and KPCTA, Federation of university teachers association and representatives from SFI took part in the workshop.

Some raised questions whether the move is anti-left. However, CPM’s tallest leader and CM Pinarayi Vijayan pointed out that raising the benchmark of higher education sector is essential and bringing policy reforms for the same is inevitable.

The decision will be further deliberated at state leadership meetings and following that only the Left government will be imbibing the changes.

Meanwhile, some, including ministers, opposed the idea that government should pay for the teachers in these private universities, even when decision making in those universities remains with private entities.

Also, education commission recommendation that private university syndicate members should not have political affiliations was opposed during the workshop. While, the recommendation that number of senate and syndicate members should be reduced, it will be considered.

During UDF government’s term, the LDF had opposed privatisation in education sector, that is entitling the colleges as deemed universities. During that time, 17 aided colleges got autonomous status. The first LDF goverment gave autonomous status to three private engineering colleges.

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