Punjab assembly passes bill to scrap Khalsa University
Education minister Aruna Chaudhary proposed the bill, which was passed unanimously after a discussion in the house .punjab Updated: Jun 23, 2017 20:56 IST
The Punjab Vidhan Sabha on Friday passed the bill to repeal the Khalsa University Act.
The Act passed by the previous Akali government in 2016 provided for opening a university on the premises of the historical Khalsa College in Amritsar.
The Punjab cabinet had last month passed an ordinance to scrap the legislation. It provided for admission of the affected students to “other appropriate educational institutes of the state as per their eligibility”.
The cabinet had given its nod to the move in April to “protect” the glorious legacy of the 125-year-old college. Chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh had all along maintained that the Khalsa College Society’s move to “destroy” its rich heritage was “appalling”.
Proposing the bill in the House on Friday, education minister Aruna Chaudhary said: “Khalsa College is a symbol of the rich Khalsa heritage and opening a university could have damaged its glorious past.”
‘TRIED TO USURP COLLEGE LAND’
Taking part in the discussion on the bill, Congress’ Raja Sansi MLA Sukhbinder Singh Sarkaria said his forefathers, who lived in Kot Khalsa, donated the land while princely states of Punjab, including the Patiala royalty to which Capt belongs, gave financial assistance to establish the college in 1892.
Sarkaria alleged Satyajit Singh Majithia, father of former revenue minister Bikram Singh Majithia, became the chancellor and tried to usurp land attached with the college in the garb of opening a university.
The MLA informed the house that of 101 members of the varsity’s governing council, 64 belonged to just three families — Majithias and that of Rajinder Mohan Singh Chhina and Charanjit Singh Chadha — who were “cleverly inducted to keep the university under their control”.
Congress MLA from Fatehgarh Sahib Kuljit Singh Nagra alleged the Akalis, especially Badals and Majithias, were “very cleverly” taking control of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC)-run institutes by forming trusts and wresting their control.