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Karnataka Assembly Approves 13 New Private Universities

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Karnataka State Assembly Approves 13 New Private UniversitiesKarnataka Assembly has approved setting up of 13 new private universities in the state. The bills to allow them were passed by the assembly on the last day of its winter session on Dec 13.

The opposition parties however have alleged that a huge kickback – around Rs.100 crore – changed hands to allow these 13 universities in the private sector to come up. Both opposition parties – Congress and JD(S)  have now started attacking the BJP government headed by Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar for passing such important bills without proper discussion in the house. Shettar, however, is blaming the opposition, saying they did not want to participate in the discussion though government was keen on it.

The issue has reached the governor whose assent is essential for the bills to become legislation. A JD-S delegation led by its state president and former chief minister H.D. Kumarswamy met Governor H.R. Bhardwaj in Bangalore Friday and urged him to withhold assent to the bills since they were passed without discussion in the assembly.

Meanwhile, two major students’ organisations, the Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh’s student wing Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) and the Communist Party of India-Marxist’s Students Federation of India (SFI), are also opposing universities coming up in the private sector and have threatened agitation. Both say the government has hurried through passing the bill without formulating proper guidelines to protect the interests of students from poorer sections of the society.

Once these universities are set up, Karnataka will be the third state in the country to have 15 private universities. Rajasthan has the highest number of private universities at 33. The second place goes to Uttar Pradesh with 18 while Gujarat with 13 is the other state with more than 10 private universities.

The two private universities functioning in Karnataka are Azim Premji University, set up by IT czar Azim Premji of Wipro, and Alliance University.

The assembly has now given its nod for Manipal University, Arka University, Sharana Basava University, Adichunchanagiri University, Dayanand Sagar University, Vellore Technical University, M.S. Ramaiah University, Devaraj Urs University, Roy Technical University, PES University, Spiritual University, Reva University and KLE Technological University.

Also Read : Most Private Universities In India Flouting UGC Norms

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