People's Democracy

(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)


No. 30

August 03 , 2008


SFI Opposes Entry Of Private And Foreign Universities

The central executive committee of the Student’s Federation of India has issued the following statement on July 26,2008

THE central executive committee of the Student’s Federation of India strongly opposes the union government’s decision to allow foreign educational institutes to start their branches/franchises in our country. This is a direct attack on the intellectual self-reliance of our country. In a conference of state higher education ministers convened on July 23-24 in New Delhi, this government has put forward the supposed lack of public funding as an excuse for opening up the higher education sector for private and foreign players. This is in effect carrying forward the vision of the NDA government as stated in the Birla-Ambani report. The Congress regime in 1995 had introduced the Private Universities Bill, but the huge public opposition made the government to keep it on hold.

The UPA government’s dependence on the Left’s crucial support and the widespread opposition to the move made it impossible for the introduction of a legislation allowing private and foreign universities. After the withdrawal of Left support, the government is eager to make-up the ‘lost time’ and introduce all anti-people legislations. Moreover, opening up of Indian higher education sector is one of the key demands of the US and the government is now more than eager to satisfy its demands. It is likely that the present government will try to introduce a Bill in parliament to this affect. Hinting that the union government is not ready to spend more on education it is suggested that the state governments should come forward to achieve the goal for allocating 6 per cent of GDP.

SFI demands the union government to take the prime responsibility of funding education. It should not try to shift the onus on the state governments. SFI opposes all legislations that allow private and foreign universities and demands that appropriate steps are taken to strengthen UGC to ensure that no private university is set up through backdoor. We also demand the government to immediately take action against all the fake educational institutes operating in our country.