M Tariq Khan
Lucknow, January 05
Uttar Pradesh Governor Ram Naik wants a change in academic regalia worn by scholars at convocations while receiving their university degrees. In a meeting with the vice chancellors of all Uttar Pradesh Universities, Naik asked them to introduce uniformity not merely in the dress code but also in the functions, which are held at such convocations.
He recallied how he was unable to put the medal round the neck of a receiving scholar at the latter’s request during a recent convocation because of the traditional cap worn by scholars at the graduation ceremonies. " I have also noticed that some universities hold extravagant convocations. This should be discouraged. Such events should be simple and have uniformity all over the State," he said. Expressing concern over the declining standards of education, Naik, suggested incentives and institution of ‘Chancellor Award’' to inculcate and encourage a healthy competition and foment quality higher education on the lines of Visitors Award set up by the Central Government.
Pointing out at the poor state and level of education being imparted in Indian educational institutions, the UP Governor lamented that none of the total 700 universities in the country figured in the existing list of top 200 educational institutions of the world. “The top 100 Indian institutions, according to one survey, has 70 universities under public sector and 30 in private sector. Only two out of the total 62 universities/institutions (the SGPGI on 26 and Chaudhary Charan Singh University, Meerut on 66 position) have made it to the list,” he said. Urging the VCs to utilize various University Grants Commission (UGC) programmes, Naik emphasized the need for their regular appraisal by National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC). “As of now only Bundelkhand, Jhansi and Sampoornand Sanskrit University of Varanasi fulfill these norms,” he said adding that similar assessment for medical, technical and agriculture universities was equally important.
On the basis of his interaction with the VCs of various universities, Naik said had drafted a nine-point agenda for discussion at the meeting. This included timely completion of academic year, holding of students union election under a democratic set up, review of examination and evaluation system, uniformity in convocations, speedy disposal of representations received against university orders, setting the age limit and qualifications of a VC as per UGC norms and establishing a better coordination and cooperation in the functioning.
He asked the VCs to categories their pending demands and problems into two – those pending with his secretariat and those pending with the State Government level – to ensure their speedy disposal. “I have drawn the attention of the chief minister towards the problems that have been brought to me my notice. He has assured me of their expeditious disposal. The State Medical Education and Agriculture Education Departments have informed me about the steps taken by them relating to the SGPGI and Banda Agriculture University and I am sure they would do the same on other pending issues,” he said.