Dr. U. G. Barad
2008-07-31 05:37:15 UTC
I attach below my speech which I made at an inconclusive debate which was
held by Citizens' Initiative at the Institute Menezes Braganza Hall today
30th July, 2008 at Panaji.
Conclusions that came out of debate were: There is heavy politics
interfering in our education system; no transparency in preparing the
proposal; both pros and cons of up-grading Goa University should be
thoroughly discussed taking all stakeholders into confidence; the actual
Central University policy needs to be placed before the stakeholders and
also made available to general public before finalizing the status of Goa
University that is in question.
Dr. U. G. Barad
*********************** My Speech ************************
Prof. Madhav Kamat, Dr. Narayan Dessai, my friend Mr. Floriano Lobo and
ladies and gentlemen.
Let me start this debate by quoting two incidences that took place in Goa
few days back.
Few day back Goa's Chief Minister said from Canacon that - POLITICS must be
kept away from Education. Contrary to this we see more and more politics
playing ACTIVE roll in our Education Systems!
On last Monday Mr. M K Shaikh as a Chairman of the Committee constituted by
the GPC announced to the press reporters that committee's recommendation is
NO to Central University Status for Goa University. Presently their
findings are in draft form and will be presented to GPC in few days.
Taking these two incidences further let me give my views on the issue under
The reality prevailing in India and in Goa Today is either Congress or BJP,
in coalition with other parties, run our country and state respectively! If
congress comes to power at the Center we get ARJUN SINGH and if BJP comes to
power, we get MURLI MANOHAR JOSHI as HRD minister, both works in their own
unique style to establish their own standings with in their respective
parties. And in the process create turbulence in EDUCATION system!
Problems that these ministers create to our EDUCATION system, I think could
be BEST solved, if some sort of Regulatory Body overlooks the politics
creeping in the Education system. And we equally need a Search Committee for
appointing Minister of HRD / Minister of EDUCATION for STATE in stead of
allowing political compulsions to appoint the Education Ministers. This of
course is a loud thinking.
Goa University was established in 1985 and exactly after 2 years i.e. in
1987 Central Government had asked Goa University to CHOOSE the option about
the STATUS requirements. Then Government of Goa in power had conveyed to
the Center that GOA UNIVERSITY must be STATE - BASED UNIVERSITY nothing
less, nothing more.
All GOANS welcomed that decision. Surprisingly, after two decades, one
politician and 2 Intellectuals CREATED HISTORY that too without consultative
process, and recommend Center to up grade existing Goa University to Central
On this issue I would like to pose few blunt questions:
Is Goa University and its 173 Hectors of prime land on the Taleigao plateau
overlooking the scenic Zuari River joining the Arabian Sea - A private
property of these 3 INDIVIDUALS?
What is more surprising is that neither the Academic Council nor the
Executive Council of the Goa University is aware of what's going on over
conversion. If the recommendation of those 3 individuals is good than can
they let Goans know why they by-passed Academic and Executive Council of Goa
University? Why other Goan Intellectuals who are equally associated with Goa
University were not consulted over this big issue? Why Principals of all the
Goa Colleges were not consulted on this issue? Are these colleges NOT part
and parcel of Goa University?
NOW let's see Why Central Government, for that matter MHRD, wants State
Universities to be converted to Central Universities!
Firstly, it is to REDUCE the FUNDING level and get millage out of
Secondly, they get the ready infrastructure PLUS enjoy implementing their
own whimsies and fancies without any restriction from the State Government
or from public dwelling in that State.
Thirdly, if up-grading existing university to central university status is
good how come Manmohan Singh did not succeed in converting Punjab University
into Central University although he was a student of that university?
Considering all this, I call this issue which is dumped on Goa and Goans to
be A Perfect Master Plan of HAVING THE CAKE AND EATING IT TOO!
I could say this because one of the basic requirements for upgrading any
university to Central status is that the University, along with its assets,
becomes the property of MHRD! This clause by itself is a deadly clause and
quite detrimental to Goa!
For getting Goa University up graded, Goa University will have to donate
their 4000 Crores worth property to Central government only to save SOME
money which Central Government is contributing as operating cost of Goa
Is it being done to see that present Vice Chancellor gets an opportunity to
retire at the age of 70 years and other teaching staffs at the age of 65
The persons who recommended up-gradation appears to have forgotten that
after up gradation of Goa University, Goan students will have to face
challenging entrance tests... which by today's standard our students are not
trained to face such competitive exams and as a result our Goan Students
will be denied the entrance to any courses of the Central University.
Besides this, Goa Government will loose their control, their say on the
In addition to what I said earlier, I strongly oppose upgrading Goa
University to Central University status for following additional reason:
Our existing Goa University has some traditions and practices which will be
greatly diluted and contaminated by the up - gradation packages that come
with the conversion. Instead of converting Goa University to Central
University our existing University can still bring in excellence by
implementing the experience gained by other advancing Universities. When
this can be done easily why at all we have to recommend conversion of Goa
With this, I think we are now left with asking question to ourselves as to -
Is up Grading of Goa University a wise decision? My answer to this is NO and
I believe in the interest of our posterity Goans unanimous decision should
also be NO TO THE PROPOSAL. The idea of recommending existing Goa University
into a Central University is A Political Master Stroke of three individuals
which is Academically Unwise!
And if at all our Aam Admi Government is hell bent on having Central
University in Goa they can as well go for it by establishing NEW UNIVERSITY
in one of the scrapped SEZ areas without even thinking of up grading
existing Goa University. Let Goa University continue to function as is
Lastly I also oppose the move of the GPC committee that will be recommending
bestowing autonomous status to some established colleges in Goa. According
to me, and in the interest of our posterity, No autonomous status must be
granted to any colleges in Goa. All existing Goan Colleges must continue to
be affiliated to Goa University.
Thank you. Jay Hind. Jay Goa.