Examine if units of political parties should be allowed on campuses, says HRD-appointed panel

At present, BJP-linked ABVP and Congress-associated NSUI are both active on campuses across the country.

Published: 16th June 2016 11:28 PM  |   Last Updated: 16th June 2016 11:50 PM   |  A+A-

By PTI

NEW DELHI: There should be an "examination" about whether to permit on university campuses the units of political parties or groups based on caste or communities, a government-appointed panel has said against the backdrop of the controversies surrounding JNU and Hyderabad University.

Among a host of other recommendations, the Committee headed by former Cabinet Secretary TSR Subramanian has also suggested that political activity on campuses should not affect academic activity.

"The Committee recommends a careful and non-emotional examination of the issue of permitting chapters of national political parties, or caste/community based organizations within campuses of universities," said the panel appointed by the HRD ministry for making recommendations for evolution of a New Education Policy (NEP).

The panel's recommendations assume significance in the backdrop of massive controversies related to Hyderabad University and Jawaharlal Nehru University.

At present, BJP-linked ABVP and Congress-associated NSUI are both active on campuses across the country.

The panel has also sought a debate on the "desirability of allowing students to continue in campuses for long periods, even after the normal schedules for each courses, or preparation of working for PhD etc is over."

"The Committee recognizes the great importance of unfettered generation of ideas, free speech and association in university campuses; it wishes to draw the impact in many circumstances of these on the rights of the students who are keen to pursue their academic goals in a time bound manner, in which they have invested heavily in time, energy and emotions," the panel said in its report.

Another key recommendation of the panel is that there should be one unified national level examination for admission to each type of professional course be it engineering, architecture, management or other streams to save the students from applying in multiple exams.

"There is clear need to rationalize the system of entrance examinations to professional courses. A note needs to be taken of the recent decision of the Supreme Court to have national common admission tests for medical institutions in the country," the Committee said.

It has, however, added that apart from these national level exams, for students from each state where the institution located, either the benchmark performance in the state board, or a state level examination can also be held.

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