BANGALORE : Karnataka
Medical Education Minister
Sharan Prakash R. Patil said here on November 7
that from next academic year, seats in medical
colleges will be filled as per the Karnataka
Professional Educational Institutions
(Regulation of Admission and Fixation of Fee)
The government has written to the Chief Justice
of the High Court of Karnataka to appoint
retired High Court judges to the Fee Regulation
Committee and the Admission Overseeing
Speaking to reporters here the Minister said
that he was expecting a response from the Chief
Justice in a few days. “Once the appointments
are made, the committees will start functioning.
The Act will help regulate the fee structure and
bring in transparency in seat allotment,” he
Besides, the law would ensure reservation for
students from different categories in private
medical colleges too. The colleges had to follow
the Act and any violation would attract legal
provisions. “Of course, the private colleges may
refuse to offer seats to the government after
the Act comes into effect. We are trying to find
an alternative by setting up government medical
colleges in all districts,” he said.
The Minister said that the intention is to
ensure quality education for poor students at
affordable prices. As per a Supreme Court
direction, medical colleges should not function
as profit-making ventures. The fee structure
should be based on the expenditure incurred by
the managements in running their colleges.
The State government has sought the Medical
Council of India’s approval for medical colleges
in Gadag, Madikeri, Karwar, Chamarajanagar,
Gulbarga and Koppal. A sum of Rs. 30 crore each
had been allotted to these new colleges. The
government will make rural service compulsory
for all medical graduates. Those who obtain MBBS
degree will have to work for a year in primary
health centres and those who obtain
post-graduation degree will work in community
health centres. “Once this mandatory policy
comes into effect, rural people will have access
to health,” he said.
To a question on the delay in inaugurating
the hi-tech hospital of the Hassan Institute of
Medical Sciences, the Minister said that he
would look into it and take action to complete
the work soon.
Later, the Minister visited the institute and
reviewed construction work.
The former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda and
MLA H.D. Revanna accompanied the minister during
his visit to the hospital.
Pai prescribes 4-year UG course for
From B. Harishchandra Bhatt
BANGALORE: A top-level 11 member
mission group headed by
technocrat T V Mohandas Pai has recommended four
year undergraduate courses for Karnataka
universities -- a recommendation precisely in
consonance with the Washington Accord of which
India is a signatory.
The suggestion has been made in the exhaustive
“Higher Education Vision 2020” report submitted
by the Mission
Group on Higher Education Policy” constituted by
the Karnataka Knowledge Commission (KKC) to
provide a roadmap to the State government to
achieve excellence in higher education.
A high-level panel on higher education has
recommended the present three year
under-graduate degree programme in arts and
science by universities be extended by one more
year incorporating a general course offered in
the first year wherein students are exposed to a
variety of academic topics.
The recommendation is part of slew of measures
suggested by a “Mission Group on Higher
Education Policy” constituted by the Karnataka
Knowledge Commission (KKC) to provide a roadmap
to the State government to achieve excellence in
In its report, the 11-member mission group
headed by technocrat T V Mohandas Pai, has
recommended that the second, third and fourth
year in the extended UG programme should be
designed to have 70 per cent mandatory courses
in a subject of specialisation and 30 per cent
“The undergraduate degree will have one major
and one or more minors, thereby enlarging the
skills set of the students. Students should have
the flexibility to take courses of their
interest across all years of study and should be
able to choose subjects across the disciplines
of natural science, humanities and the social
sciences,” the report states. The report was
submitted to the State government on December
The panel has also incorporated in its
recommendation a blueprint to double the present
Gross Enrolment Ratio (GRE) of 18 per cent in
higher education by the year 2020. The State
government is already in possession of another
report “Vision 2020” on the status of higher
education in the State submitted by the
Karnataka State Higher Education Council during
September this year.
The present report submitted by the mission
group on Thursday has 63 recommendations across
six sectors covering student and faculty
aspects, pedagogy practices, vocational
education, besides governance and administration
in higher education.
The mission group has suggested that while
formulating the curriculum for UG programmes,
the Board of Studies of an university could
design 75 per cent of the syllabus while the
remaining 25 per cent could be designed by
academic bodies of affiliated colleges based on
local needs, students’ expectations and societal
The panel has suggested that all State
universities build a database of subject experts
who can actively participate in the exercise of
To move away with rote learning and memorisation,
the panel has recommended that a large part of
the curriculum at the UG level be devoted to
developing problem solving skills, application
of knowledge and project work.
It has also suggested to amend and overhaul the
Karnataka State Universities Act 2000 with
regard to autonomy, fostering creativity among
students and encourage research and innovation.
“The Act must promote innovation,
experimentation and flexibility in the
governance structure of universities. Otherwise,
it will become an obstacle for growth and
development of higher education,” the report
The mission group was cochaired by Prof Sundar
Sarukkai, Director, Manipal Centre for
Philosophy and Humanities with KRS Murthy,
former director, Indian Institute of Management,
Bangalore, H A Ranganath, director, National
Assessment and Accreditation Council, Bangalore,
Meena Rajiv Chandawarkar, vice-chancellor,
Karnataka State Women’s University, Bijapur,
Shivashankara Murthy, vice chancellor, Mangalore
University among others as its members.
K'nataka plans tough rules for private
BANGALORE : Karnataka State Cabinet has
approved the establishment of three more private
universities. At least, three more established
educational institutions have sought permission
to establish private universities. The State
already has two private universities.
The Cabinet recently approved the proposals of M
S Ramaiah Group, Manipal Academy of Higher
Education and Jain Group for opening private
universities in the state. Azim Premji
University and Alliance University are already a
reality in Bangalore.
Interestingly, those varsities which are in the
pipeline are also going to be in or around
Bangalore, while there is a dearth of good
colleges and universities in tier-II and
On May 26, the state Cabinet cleared the
proposal of Vellore Institute of Technology to
open a private university in Bangalore, while a
draft bill pertaining to M S Ramaiah University
Amrita Education Group, Sri Devaraj Urs
Educational Trust and Dayanand Sagar
Institutions are among those who have submitted
applications seeking permission to open private
universities, according to H Siddaiah, Principal
Secretary, Higher Education Department.
The State Higher Education Council has come out
with a draft rules document, which is yet to go
before the executive committee of the council.
The council has also prepared a draft Act which
can serve as a blueprint for preparing
legislations for each private university.
Council executive director Prof K M Kaveriappa
said there should be a set of rules for becoming
eligible to seek permission to open a private
university so that there will be no provision
for ad hoc decisions. Also, certain standards
could be set for educational institutions to
A body which sponsors a private varsity should
own not less than 10 to 15 acres in urban area
and not less than 25 acres in the rural sector,
where it proposes to establish the university.
If the sponsoring body already has established
institutions in an area not less than 10 to 15
acres, it can apply.
But there could be some relaxation in minimum
land possession in exceptional cases. The draft
rules say that while following the UGC
guidelines to submit the form, they should pay
fees to the Higher Education Council which is
The project proposal should be explained as per
the prescribed 12 heads. The title of ownership
of the land owned by the sponsors and the master
plan of the existing and proposed buildings
should be submitted.
It should establish its financial credentials,
including possession of sufficient funds, and
create a permanent statutory endowment fund.
The proposal of the sponsoring body should be
put before a search committee which has members
nominated by the Higher Education Council and a
nominee of the UGC or Vice-Chancellor of a
The search committee after physical verification
of the university site, if satisfied, will
advise the government to consider the proposal.
If the proposal is rejected, it will not be
eligible to apply for the next one year. In the
model draft Act too, the Council has stipulated
that a private university will have to comply
with the norms of not only the University Grants
Commission, but also of various statutory
bodies. The admissions and fees should also be
in accordance with UGC rules.
To a question as to why all private
universities, like the State universities,
should be modeled on a single Act, Kaveriappa
said, “Each private university will function in
a different way, because they are created
through a separate Act. The draft bill will only
serve as a blueprint as to how the bills should
Former vice-chancellor of the Bangalore
University, M S Thimmappa, said it was
unfortunate that so far private universities had
been allowed to come up, without a policy.
“There should be least government interference
in private universities. When autonomy comes,
responsibility comes automatically.
“But there should be transparency in the
management of universities. If the government
controls private varsities too much, they too
will end up like many state universities which
are in the news for the wrong reasons,” he said.