Is Smriti a proxy?

Smriti Zubin Irani, 38, the youngest minister in the Modi cabinet has been allocated the Ministry of Human Resource Development. The move has surprised many political observers who have given vent to their views and venom on social media as well as in private gatherings.

Irani, a higher secondary passout, with a soap entertainer background, was pitted against Rahul Gandhi in Amethi and, indeed, gave him a tough fight, loosing by just a few thousand votes. Obviously this does not qualify her for the august Ministry of Human Resource Development which was, in the recent past, graced by giants like Murli Manohar Joshi, Arjun Singh and Kapil Sibal.

Higher Education experts and political observers are at their wits end to solve this mind-boggling riddle behind Modi's ministry-making exercise.

Smriti is a sitting Rajya Sabha member who was elected from Gujarat in 2011 and hence doesn't need a bye-election route to Parliament till 2016. But then what prompted Narendra Modi to award the high-profile MHRD portfolio to her?

Is she being used as proxy, a stop-gap arrangement, till a political heavy-weight --may be Dr Murli Manohar Joshi -- agrees to step
in ?


Modi hands down 'to do' list to IITs

President Pranab Mukherjee, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and HRD Minister Smriti Irani during the Conference of Chairmen, Board of Governors and Directors of Indian Institutes of Technology at Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi on August 22.

NEW DELHI : On August 22 the President of India, the Visitor of the Indian Institutes of Technology called a meeting of all the IIT chairmen and directors where Prime Minister Narendra Modi handed down an array of dos and don't while the HRD minister remained a mute spectator. "Science is universal. Technology must be local," the he said, calling upon IITs to give projects related to local needs and requirements to their students, so that they can find innovative solutions as they pursue their studies. more


UGC bows to IISc compromise formula on 4-year BS course 
NEW DELHI : On August 11 the UGC beat a hasty retreat on the issue of four-year Bachelor of Science (BS) course run by the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore and worked out a compromise formula. more

UGC to seek time from SC on damned deemed varsities
NEW DELHI : With July 31 deadline at hand the UGC has decided to seek more time from the Supreme Court to submit report on the reassessment of 41 deemed universities facing de-recognition.

UGC proposes a 3-year Bachelor of Vocation degree course      
MUMBAI: UGC has proposed a three-year Bachelor of Vocation (B.Voc) degree course at recognised colleges and universities. It will be different from the conventional arts, science and commerce course. more

UGC move to bail out 44 damned deemed universitiesl
NEW DELHI : Under pressure, the University Grants Commission has recommended a fresh inspection and review of 44 deemed universities that were found unfit by a government committee in 2009. more


IIEST, Shibpur wants to go the IISER way

Pune, Kolkata film inst. to be centres of excellence

4-year UG course : UGC sends warning note to varsities



4 IIITs to get degree awarding powers

NEW DELHI : On August 12 HRD Minister Smriti Irani introduced the Indian Institutes of Information Technology Bill 2014 in Lok Sabha which seeks to declare the four IIITs as institutes of national importance on lines of the IITs and NITs, granting them degee awarding powers. These four IIITs are the IIIT Allahabad, the IIIT Gwalior, the Indian Institute of Information Technology, Design and Manufacturing Jabalpur and the Indian Institute of Information Technology, Design and Manufacturing, Kancheepuram.


SC rejects TS plea, puts Eamcet on track

NEW DELHI : On August 11 the Supreme Court finally rejected the Telangana government's plea and refused to extend the time limit for admissions under Eamcet 2014. The the two-member bench ruled that the process should be completed by August 31, in accordance with the provisions of the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act 2014. more


New VCs in Haryana universities

CHANDIGARH : Haryana Governor-Chancellor Jagannath Pahadia has appointed Major-Gen Ranjit Singh (retd) as Vice-Chancellor of Chaudhary Ranbir Singh University, Jind and Dr Asha Kadyan as VC of Bhagat Phool Singh Mahila University, Khanpur Kalan, Sonipat, a Raj Bhawan source said on July 26. Dr S K Gakhar of Centre for Biotechnology, MDU, Rohtak,
would be the new VC of Chaudhary Bansi Lal University, Bhiwani.


SC stays Kalyani's ouster from MKU

NEW DELHI : On July 4 the Supreme Court stayed an order of the Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court, quashing the appointment of Kalyani Mathivanan as Vice-Chancellor of Madurai Kamaraj University. more

Kalyani Mathivanan


CBI books Gajbhiya for disproportionate assets

N.S. Gajbhiye

NEW DELHI : The Central Bureau of Investigation has registered a case against N.S. Gajbhiye, former vice-chancellor of Harisingh Gour University, Sagar for allegedly amassing illegal wealth worth over Rs. 2.54 crore. more





Ashok Thakur

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