The Medical Education Department and some deemed-to-be universities seem to be locked in a war of words. Reason: ‘misreading’ of Memorandums of Understanding (MoU) they signed on seat sharing.
The argument is over the department’s claim to 25 per cent of the overall seats in deemed-to-be universities.
A copy of the MoU available with Express mandates that the universities must provide 25 per cent of the enhanced seats and not overall intake, contrary to the department’s stand.
Who Read What?
In February, the department issued notices to six deemed-to-be medical universities for not surrendering 25 per cent of their seats to the government. In reply, the universities said the department had no right to ask for seats or interfere in university activities as they were already surrendering 25 per cent of enhanced seats, as per the agreements.
The registrar of one of the deemed-to-be medical universities told Express, “The agreement was to surrender 25 per cent of the enhanced seats, which we are already doing. We are surrendering five seats every year. It is not our mistake if the government has misread the agreement”.
Clauses and Confusion
According to officials in the department, the government seems to have made an error while signing the MoUs. “Though the universities come under the University Grants Commission (UGC), they are bound to give 25 per cent seats. However, while signing the MoUs, it was not mentioned whether it was on the overall intake,” an official source said.
“As per the agreement, we actually have no rights to question them (universities) as most of them are surrendering 25 per cent of the enhanced seats every year,” a source said.
Meanwhile, Medical Education Minister Sharan Prakash Patil has also accepted that the state has no hold over the MoUs. Patil said, “Following the issues mentioned in the agreement, we have forwarded the matter to the Law Department for opinion on what action can be taken.”
Standing Their Ground
In February, the Medical Education Department issued notices to Siddartha University, Tumkur, KLE University, Belgaum, BLDE University, Bijapur, JSS University, Mysore, Nitte University, Mangalore, and Yenepoya University, Mangalore.
Meanwhile, official sources said the Medical Education Department has not issued No Objection Certificates (NOC) to many deemed-to-be universities. According to documents available from the department, some NOCs were issued by the Department of Higher Education.