State will reinvent modern education for the global desi, says Vinod Tawde in Pune

Vinod Tawde, state education minister, said on Monday that the state government will concentrate on taking the quality of education, from school to university, to international standards.

pune Updated: Jul 04, 2018 16:38 IST
Ananya Barua
Ananya Barua
Hindustan Times, Pune
Vinod Tawde, state education minister, at the convocation ceremony of Symbiosis College of Arts and Commerce on Monday. He said that the higher education system requires reform.(Sanket Wankhade/HT PHOTO)

Vinod Tawde, state education minister, said on Monday that the state government will concentrate on taking the quality of education, from school to university, to international standards.

Harbouring the vision of ‘local to global’, Tawde said, “Our youth have the potential to be a valuable human resource to the world, but for that, we need to change our approach towards education, by making it relevant and unrestricted. We have decided to follow an international standard syllabus in Marathi-medium schools which will equip them to compete, not only with students from CBSE and ICSE boards but also with other international boards. They can also appear for various competitive exams.

“Simultaneously, our higher education system requires reform and we are doing our best to enhance the syllabus, pedagogy, and infrastructural facilities to make that possible. A correct balance of research, academics and skill development needs to be inculcated in the system to churn out the best in our youth.”

Currently, the government has decided to set up Maharashtra state assessment and accreditation assistance cell (MSAAC) to help higher education institutes get accreditation, and better their chances of scoring high rankings globally.

The state government has plans to help 3,000 colleges in the state get accreditation by 2021 in addition to the existing pool of 1,174 colleges. There are also plans to help many colleges with funds, better curriculum and research grants. An additional 700 colleges will be assisted to get an A grade in the national assessment and accrediation council (NAAC).

24 institutions barred

On the contrary, the Rashtriya Uchchatar Shikshan Abhiyan (Rusa) scheme, designed to help institutions by funding for their infrastructure and new programmes, dipped to a new low as 24 institutions in the city were barred, due to high scores.

The Rashtriya Uchchatar Shikshan Abhiyan (Rusa) scheme, launched in 2013, is sponsored by the central government. Applications had been invited from higher education institutions and eligibility criteria had been set.

Savitribai Phule Pune University (SPPU) had been encouraging colleges with 2.5 NAAC CGPA score to apply for the funding. However, the workshops organised to guide the institution heads about the application procedure allegedly did not mention the existence of an upper limit for scores.


One such college, affected by the denial was Modern College of Arts, Science and Commerce. According to RS Zunjarrao, principal, there is a contradiction in implementation of the scheme, as the college is being penalised for scoring better.

“A workshop was set up to help us through the procedure, but it did not for once, mention the upper limit. After we began the application process on June 25, we realized that we were barred from competing because the upper limit was 3.5 and we have 3.51 CGPA,” said Zunjarrao. Responding to the situation, Nitin Karmalkar, vice chancellor, SPPU, said, “It’s an unfortunate scenario, and the university has written to Rusa seeking a clear confirmation. We are following it up and will soon have something concrete.”

SCAC to retry for university status next academic year

After a number of city colleges were deprived of the ₹2 crore funding under Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA), Symbiosis College of Arts and Commerce (SCAC) is planning to reapply and attempt for the university status, in the coming year, informed principal Hrishikesh Soman, on Monday.

He was speaking at the third convocation ceremony of SCAC, an autonomous college, affiliated to Savitribai Phule Pune University. This will be the second college, after Fergusson College, to attempt for the status.

“For many years, our college has been contributing a great deal to the society churning out bright individuals in the field of Humanities and Commerce, but now we wish to expand. As an autonomous institute, we have introduced several undergraduate and postgraduate courses in addition to our liberal arts course. Now, we are planning to attempt for the university status next year, which will help us immensely, to upgrade our academic, research and infrastructure, ” said Soman.

SB Mujumdar, founder and president, Symbiosis, added, “It’s high time we stop restricting education. We need to blend together different disciplines such as humanities, engineering and sciences, so that a symbiotic relationship can be forged for the benefit of the individual as well as the society. We will be planning courses based on this ideal for the college in the next year.”

The convocation ceremony, which had Vinod Tawde, as the chief guest, had 476 undergraduate students receiving their degrees across both faculties- arts and commerce.

Speaking about the event, Tawde said, “Students should be allowed to shop freely in the mall of education. Education is too holistic and diverse to be contained in the water tight compartments of arts, science and humanities. It must be integrated as a whole in order to achieve development in the true sense.”

First Published: Jul 04, 2018 16:37 IST