Tamil Nadu has a special place in the report that declares 44 universities across the India are unfit. One-third of these colleges, accused by an expert committee of being run like family fiefdoms, are in Tamil Nadu.
Three of them belong to local politicians:
DMK Union Minister Jagathratchagan's Bharat University
New Justice Party President A C Shanmugam's Dr MGR University
AIADMK MP Thambidurai's St Peter's University
NDTV tried to talk to Thambidurai, whose wife is listed as the Chancellor of St. Peter's University. On record, he denies any affiliation with the college.
NDTV: What do you have to say about the way these institutions are run?
Thambidurai: I don't run any college
NDTV: Your wife heads St Peter's University?
Thambidurai: No, she doesn't.
Education experts say it's political clout and not merit that has got these colleges the much-wanted status of deemed universities. These institutions can decide their own syllabus and fees. Often, admissions are for sale.
Professors at these universities admit that money is a driving force for the owners. "Except for finance committees, there is no interference from families, particularly in academics," says M K Padmanabhan, the Vice-Chancellor of Dr MGR University.
A point in favour of the blacklisted universities is that they were sanctioned their special status during the last UPA government. And since then, periodic reviews by the University Grants Commission have not found fault with these colleges.
"Only three months ago, the UGC said in writing, we are one of the perfect colleges," says Padmnabhan.
Tamil Nadu: Too many politician- run colleges
Black money gainfully utilised for education of the rich and to amass more black money by way of (underhand) capitation fees!
DESA E- Newsletter Mar 2017
15 hours ago