With mounting salaries and no proportional hike in government grants or fee, Punjabi University has further slipped into financial crisis. The university has projected a budget of Rs 530 crore for 2016-17, a deficit of Rs 131 crore.
Against an income of Rs 399.43 crore from various resources, including fee, grants from central and state Government, University Grants Commission (UGC) funding and donations, the university has projected an expenditure of Rs 530 crore.
Of this, Rs 487 crore will go for paying salaries of teaching and non-teaching staff, which comes out to be around 80% of the total budget. Besides, Rs 19.77 crore will be spend on research and scholarships, while Rs 7 crore on construction of new blocks and maintenance of infrastructure.
However, there is no mention of the 7th Pay Commission in the budget, which has to be implemented from January 1, 2016.
The budget was approved in the syndicate meeting of Punjabi University, which met here on Tuesday, under chairmanship of vice-chancellor Jaspal Singh.
Some syndics advised the university authorities to request the state government to enhance the grants, which are decreasing in terms of percentage of government contribution towards university. Hike in fee will deprive many from higher education, thus the government should bear the burden of rising salary bill, said syndicate members.
“Earlier, the government used to provide around 80% of the total expenditure to the university, but it has now reduced to 15% and is decreasing every year. The government should fix the grants in terms of percentage, so the university get ample funding with rising expenditures, particularly the salary bill,” said a university official. He said with almost 80% budget going towards salaries, the vice-chancellor was left with very limited funds to bring out major academic and administrative change, which needs extra funding.
Meanwhile, the syndicate also okayed signing of a memorandum of understanding between Indian and foreign universities to expand the contours of higher education and research
Talking about the ranking given by the National Accreditation and Assessment Council (NAAC) that was 0.23 higher than the previous grade (it was 3.11 during 2008 as against 3.34 points this time out of a maximum of four), the VC said it had been specifically mentioned that any institute aspiring to develop the regional language should follow Punjabi University as its model of development.