Education minister calls for restoration of academic atmosphere
Imphal, July 24, 2018 (DIPR): Education Minister Shri Thokchom Radheshyam today made an earnest appeal to the agitating bodies, student organisations and all other stakeholders to call off the present stir at Manipur University to enable restoration of academic atmosphere in the educational institutions of the State.
He made the appeal while speaking to media persons at a press conference held at his New Secretariat office chamber. Shri Th. Radheshyam, who is also the Government Spokesperson, urged all the stakeholders to help declaration of results of the 6th semester examination for the sake of the students and their welfare.
The Minister sought people’s support, especially, from the parents, teachers and students in this regard. He also urged the agitating bodies to allow conduct of regular classes in Manipur University, colleges and schools, and also to let the admission procedures begin.
Shri Radheshyam said that the issue relating to the demand for removal of the Vice Chancellor of Manipur University has seriously affected the academic atmosphere of different educational institutions of the State.
In order to sort out the matter, discussions at the level of the Chief Minister Shri N. Biren Singh with the representatives of Manipur University Students’ Union (MUSU) and Manipur University Teachers’ Association (MUTA) had already been held on various occasions, the Government Spokesperson informed.
The Chief Minister along with senior members of the State Government had brought the issue to the highest levels of the Government of India including the Prime Minister, the Union Human Resources Development Minister and other high ranking officials, he added.
Stating that there had been responses from the MHRD in consideration of the demands raised by MUSU and MUTA, Shri Th Radheshyam said that the first response was in the nature of the constitution of a Fact Finding Committee led by a Joint Secretary of UGC vide order dated 12th July, 2018. The same is now to be headed by a retired acting Chief Justice, he added.
However, the above developments are not fully acceptable to MUSU and MUTA. They continue to demand that the enquiry should be made under the provisions of the Commissions of Inquiry Act, 1952 so that the body may function more independently. They are also demanding that the Vice-Chancellor should be asked to proceed on leave and an in-charge VC be appointed in his place, Shri Radheshyam said.
Maintaining that detailed discussions covering the entire gamut of issues had been conducted on the floor of Manipur Legislative Assembly on July 23, 2018, Shri Th. Radheshyam recalled that Chief Minister Shri N. Biren Singh while taking part at the discussion had conveyed the House that the Government has been making serious efforts to resolve the issue. The Government would still continue to explore to resolve the crisis, he assured.
He informed that about 93 colleges are currently affiliated to Manipur University. With a total strength of about 82,000 students suggesting that there are about 27,000 students in each year of the three year under graduate degree programme. Students who passed the 6th semester which may number about 20,000 are expected to seek for higher studies at Manipur University and other universities.
The Manipur University has a strength of about 3000 students which suggest that its intake capacity annually is limited to about 1500 students, he said while adding that the balance of students are expected to seek admissions for further studies in different universities of the country.
Shri Radheshyam said that the delay in declaration of the results of students who have taken the 6th semester examination is limiting the option of pursuing higher studies and is expected to create a grave situation in the future management of higher education in the State. In case, a backlog is created of such huge numbers, it will be critically challenging for the authorities involved in the management of higher education in the future, he added.
The Minister said that the State Government is also taking up step for the initial functioning of Dhanamanjuri University from the current academic year. He appealed to allow the Dhanamanjuri authority to continue with the admission procedure so that the functioning of the new university is not affected in its very infancy.
Commissioner (Higher and Technical Education and Education-S) Shri H. Deleep and Director (Education-S) Shri Th. Kirankumar were also present at the press conference.