The University of Madras has amended its statute, enabling participation of the hearing-impaired in the elections to the Senate and Syndicate of the historic 155-year-old varsity.
The law in question, section 5(1)(a) of the Madras University Act, was amended and ratified at the university’s Senate meeting held on Saturday.
The existing provision proscribes those of unsound mind, the hearing-impaired and those suffering from leprosy from elections to these bodies.
Changing the rule was on the advice of the Higher Education Department, which had asked the varsity to follow the example set by the Manonmaniam Sundaranar University, Tirunelveli.
The amendment, while exempting the hearing impaired, continues to keep out of bounds those of unsound mind and those suffering from leprosy.
However, taking strong exception to the continued retention of those with leprosy in the list was Senate member Prof Ravindran. He said, “By continuing the practice of excluding those suffering from leprosy, we are insulting the great leaders and social workers such as Mahatma Gandhi and Mother Teresa who had worked tirelessly for their upliftment. This is very unfortunate.”
To this, another Senate member, M Arumugam, who moved in the amendment, clarified that it was being carried out only at the behest of the Higher Education Department.
Exam Fee Hiked
The University of Madras has decided to hike examination fees for all Undergraduate courses. A decision to this effect was taken at the Senate meeting of the varsity that was held on Saturday. Accordingly, the fees per paper has been hiked from Rs 55 to Rs 65; the fees for practical examination was hiked from `60 to `65.
Similarly the fee for examinations to post-graduate courses was hiked from Rs 100 to Rs 120. It was also decided to effect a reduction in the fees per paper in MPhil from Rs 200 to Rs 150 and maintain status quo as far as the fees for MPhil practicals was concerned, at Rs 150. The changes are in line with the regulations of the Tamil Nadu Higher Education Department.