The Legislative Assembly has passed a Bill which confers private university status to 13 institutions. Two of these institutions are already functioning as deemed universities and have been pulled up by the University Grants Commission (UGC) for their failure to comply with rules.
Arka University under Jain Group of Institutions and Devaraj Urs University in Kolar will now join the bandwagon of private universities. Now, the state will have 15 private universities.
In 2010, the UGC had derecognised 44 deemed universities across the country, including six from the state for irregularities and their failure to meet the prescribed standards.
Jain University, Devaraj Urs University of Kolar and other derecognised deemed universities filed a case in the Supreme Court, which directed the Ministry of Human Resources Development to constitute a committee to investigate the “deemed status”.
However, Santhosh, Joint Registrar of Jain University said, “Arka University is a completely different entity. Of course, it is promoted by Jain Group of Institutions. . Arka University will essentially cater to urban design and aerospace engineering courses.”
He also said that the 40 per cent of reservation for the domicile of Karnataka is acceptable but the fee which is to be decided by the government need to be deeply discussed.
Chairperson of Devaraj Urs Group of Institutions R L Jalappa said that the private university status is for the Doddaballapur campus which will have post graduate courses apart from the technological courses. “About 40 per cent of reservation for Karnataka students is acceptable but the fee of these students is a matter of concern,” he added.
A senior officer of the Higher Education Department said, “These institutions do not have any prohibitions on the status that can be obtained, be it a private or a university which will get the deemed status. The government is seriously thinking to review the issue of private universities.”
The proposed deemed universities are Manipal University, Arka University, Dayananda Sagar University, Vellore Institute of Technology University, PES University, M S Ramaiah University, Devaraj Urs University, KLE Technological University, Sharana Basava University, Adichunchanagiri University, Rai Technological University, Reva University, and Amrutha Sinchana Spiritual University.
The existing ones are Azim Premji University and Alliance University.