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 ?


SC upholds MCI's PG admission rules

The Supreme Court of India

NEW DELHI: On January 12 the Supreme Court upheld the Medical Council of India's (MCI) postgraduate admission regulations and quashed Kerala government's decision to reserve seats for doctors working in its hospitals and other departments. The court said, in no uncertain terms, that the admissions to the postgraduate medical courses can be done only on the basis of merit of students appearing in the common entrance examination. The apex court division bench comprising Justices T S Thakur and R Banumathi said that the regulations framed by the MCI were binding and state governments could not make any rule in violation of the regulations. more


IIT Delhi director quits, raises a bitter contoversy 
NEW DELHI : IIT Delhi director Raghunath K Shevgaonkar resigned in a huff on December 22, raising a controversy which leaves the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) to explain many things. more

PMO seeks digital connectivity status of universities
NEW DELHI : Prime Minister's Office has sought details of universities connected via optical fibre networks and those having local area networks (LAN) set up on their campuses along with wi-fi facility.

One year after, CSIR is still without a Director-General      
NEW DELHI: The Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), country biggest research organisation with numerous laboratories in the country has been running without a de jure boss for over a year
. more

SC tells Central govt to hurry up on damned deemed universities
NEW DELHI : On January 8 the Supreme Court gave Central government five-weeks' to submit its report on the status of the 41 deemed universities facing de-recognition. more


MHRD accepts uniform staffing pattern for varsities

Pune, Kolkata film inst. to be centres of excellence

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



Hungarian scholarships for Indian students

NEW DELHI :  The University Grants Commission has invited applications from interested Indian students for “Stipendium Hungaricum” Scholarship Program started by the Hungarian Government. The scholarships are for 200 Indian students to pursue undergraduate, postgraduate, M.Phil/PhD and postdoctoral studies in Hungary in 2015. more


Mediation fails, Andhra may hold own Eamcet

HYDERABAD : Third-party mediation efforts by the Governor having failed, the AP government was now actively considering to hold its own EAMCET. Andhra government, which had threatened to move court if the Telangana government refuses to accept its authority, hasn't taken a step so far giving clear indications that Andhra will go its own way. more


Higher Edu & Research Bill, 2011 withdrawn

NEW DELHI : On November 25 the Central government officially withdrew, so to say, the sword of Damocles hanging over the UGC and the AICTE. The government withdrew from Rajya Sabha the Higher Education and Research Bill, 2011, which sought to create an overarching body in the higher education subsuming existing regulatory bodies such as UGC, AICTE and NCTE. more


ADN Bajpai gets a
2nd term at HPU

SHIMLA : Dr A D N Bajpai got a second term as a vice-chancellor at Himachal Pradesh University here.
A Raj Bhawan source confirmed on November 15 that the Chancellor Urmila Singh, has appointed Bajpai for a second term.

A D N Bajpai


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.





Ashok Thakur

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