Bengaluru: Is the State Government not inclined to save the Karnataka State Open University (KSOU)? Looking at the way the Higher Education is showing its lack of interest in getting back the UGC recognition to the University, it can be concluded that admissions to various courses of the University are doubtful even for the next academic year.
Though the Karnataka High Court has directed the UGC, KSOU and the Government to commence non-technical courses, the Government is not taking any interest in the same. However, the Government is eyeing the Rs.450 crore funds that is with the University and it plans to ‘utilise’ the money for other development works.
Following the High Court order, the Higher Education Department was supposed to communicate with the UGC and the Union Government.
But sources in the Government say that not a single file has moved and the stalemate continues, at the cost of lakhs of students who are waiting for valid certificates. Even the political bosses of the Department have not bothered to look into the issues.
With the Assembly elections likely to be held in May 2018, the Government feels that it will be able to be in power only till March and it would not be possible for it to get back the UGC recognition by then.
It may be recalled here that in September last year, Higher Education Minister Basavaraj Rayareddy had hinted at closure of the KSOU. He had said that in the absence of UGC recognition, it had become extremely difficult to run the University.
Rayareddy had said, “KSOU has about 700 employees. This include 89 teaching faculty and 300 employees working on contract basis. With hardly any work for the last three-years, employees have been drawing a salary of Rs. 50 crore every year. In fact, the University has been drawing funds to pay employees from Rs.600 crore deposits made in various Banks. All the teaching staff, who have been drawing salaries for no work, will be transferred to other Universities while the Government will think about absorbing other employees into various Departments.”
“Most buildings and other infrastructure of KSOU are located on the premises of Manasagangothri campus of Mysore University. We have been thinking about utilising the infrastructure to set up Skill Development Centre,” the Minister had said.