People's Democracy

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


Vol. XXXVI

No. 23

June 10, 2012

FOREIGN VARSITIES ISSUE

 

SFI Protests Backdoor Moves

 

THE Students Federation of India (SFI) has strongly protested against and condemned the shameful move by the Ministry of Human Resources Development (MHRD) to facilitate backdoor entry for foreign universities in India. The MHRD, which is facing stiff resistance and opposition from the academic community, general public and also in the parliament against the proposed Foreign Education Institutions (Regulation of Entry& Operations) Bill 2010, is not sure of getting it passed in Rajya Sabha. The ministry is therefore trying now to permit for the backdoor entry for foreign universities by directing the University Grants Commission (UGC), which has no jurisdiction in this matter, to find out the possibilities within the existing laws of regulating and allowing the foreign educational institutions. The SFI statement, issued by its central executive committee (CEC) from New Delhi on June 1, said it is very clear that the government is trying to satisfy the long pending demands of US education corporates for an easy entry into India ahead of the HRD minister, Kapil Sibalís visit to America.

 

The SFI has expressed the opinion that the goal of producing Indian professionals for multinational companies through the proposed Foreign Universities Bill is a grim reminder of the colonial educational policies. Universities have the responsibility of creating knowledge for the entire society. They are the dwelling places of ideas and idealism. If our university system is opened to foreign and private players, it will be to the detriment of our intellectual self-reliance. While the experience of private universities in our country is already very bitter, the SFI said allowing foreign universities would in effect provide legitimacy to private universities and create a parallel higher education system in our country at a high monetary and social cost.

 

Registering its complete opposition to any such move, the SFI has therefore demanded that all such moves by the union government must be abandoned without delay.