From Chandrashekhar Sahu in Raipur
In a span of about three and a half years after the birth of the new state of Chhattisgarh, the state gove-rnment decided to recognise more than 100 private univers-ities.
In the State Assembly, Shri Vikram Usendi stated that 97 private universi-ties which were running in the state since the year 2002, would have to comply with the conditions set under the Act to remain operational. He further added that without having obtained the approval of the state government, these private universities were running courses and collecting a hefty fee from the students, without providing an adeq-uate teaching staff.
Under this Act, each private university, to remain in the field, is required to have at least 25 acres of land in Raipur and must deposit Rs two crores before the regulatory pannel by June 30 this year. A building with the construction area of a minimum 25,000 sq. ft is required and the university must offer at least three courses. Under the provision of this Act, Vice-Chancellors of private universities have to reside in the campus.
Under this Act, each private university, to remain in the field, is required to have at least 25 acres of land in Raipur and must deposit Rs two crores before the regulatory panel by June 30 this year.
As a result, Mats University was the first to deposit Rs two crores and purchase 70 acres of land in Mana. Some private universities challenged this amended Private Univer-sities Act in the Bilaspur High Court. The High Court has asked the state government to submit its view on this issue.
Less than 15 private uni-versities have come forward to follow the new criteria, but the total picture will be clear after June 30.
Initial permission and then amendment in the Private Universities Act and the subsequent challenge in High Court, all have resulted in turbulence.
At this stage of uncertainty where the High Court verdict is yet to come, the students are in a state of dilemma, more because of eye-catching advertisements by these private universities in the media.
Interest of investors, level of education and future of students-are all vital components in this issue of public interest, so the recognition of these private universities has received different reactions from different corners.