At a time when the state government is working towards putting together a new set of statutes in order to implement the recently approved State Public Universities Bill, principals of city colleges are hoping for some statutes to be retained from the old Act.
In a meeting conducted between a group of city college principals on Thursday, it was decided to bring the attention of the university as well as the government, to the new rules introduced in the new Act, especially related to the elections, nomination of Academic Council and Board of Studies (BoS) members.
“A lot of changes have been introduced by the new Act and we want to make sure that the quality is not compromised with. The statutes as prescribed by the previous Act were very apt and in consideration of the quality, which is why we suggest that some of the statutes remain the same,” said Dinesh Panjwani, principal of R D National College, Bandra. He added that the previous version of the Act made sure that qualifications of all members was appropriate to the roles they take in any of the committees at the university, which is why it was important to retain some parts of the old statutes.
The highlight of the new Act is the comeback of student elections. While students are getting re-entry into the system, principals are unhappy about the scaling down of number of elected principals in various committees. “Elected member principals are only a handful, whereas the number of nominated principals has increased. We principals don’t want to go against the administration but we want to be the of best help to the university,” said Marie Fernandes, principal of St Andrew’s College.
A final draft of all suggestions made by these principals will be sent to officials at the University of Mumbai as well as the state government, early next week, said principals. When HT contacted officials from the state higher education department, they said work on the statutes is underway. “The government had started work on statutes well before the new Act was passed in the assembly. We will finish drafting the by-laws by the end of this month,” said an aide to state education minister Vinod Tawde, on condition of anonymity.