BANGALORE: The road to the establishment of the Bangalore School of Economics (BSE) has hit a stumbling block. A stormy Bangalore University Academic Council on Friday postponed the voting on the School citing the need for “more clarity” on the project.
It resolved to form another committee comprising members of Academic Council, Syndicate and Deans - whose report would be placed in the next Academic Council for voting.
Concerns were raised about the implications of giving away a large portion of University land to a private party for academic purpose. “Does this mean that our own Department of Economics is incapable of running an institution on the same lines? We might as well strengthen our department than involve a third party to do the same,” opined Dr R Karuna Murthy, a member of the Council.
“Going by the same logic, anyone can approach BU with money and start a school. The question here is whether a formal Expression of Interest (EoI) was issued. Why only Jindal Group? There may have been other parties interested to invest more money,” said another member, demanding more clarity on why and how Jindal Group was selected.
More clarity was sought over the seat sharing ratio as well. “According to the Supreme Court, the seat sharing should be 50 per cent for SC/ST and the rest for General merit. The BSE report says that 25 per cent of seats would be reserved for Karnataka students. What about the rest 75 per cent?” questioned a member. He quoted Sec 3(4) of the Karnataka State Universities (KSU) Act, 2000, that talks about lease, sale or transfer of land without prior approval of the state government.
Vice-Chancellor Dr N Prabhu Dev told Express, “Well, I don’t see much hope left about the School. The BSE report is clear enough. Let us see what the new committee will find out.” Smart Cards in BU
The council approved the implementation of smart cards in the University. The project is being sponsored by Canara Bank, at an estimated cost of `14.40 crore. The project is spread over a period of 10 years, and the life of each card is also 10 years. The cards will act like ID cards for students, said a member.