'Drop 'Muslim' and 'Hindu' from AMU, BHU to reflect secular character': Here are UGC panel's suggestions

In an effort to reflect the secular character of central universities, a University Grants Commission (UGC) committee has suggested that the words 'Muslim' and 'Hindu' be dropped from the names of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) and and Banaras Hindu University (BHU), according to reports.

The committee is one of the five commitees which was set up by the UGC on 25 April to look into complaints of irregularities against 10 central universities, reported The Indian Express. The panel was supposed to look into infrastructure and the academic, research and financial operations in these universities.

The committee has suggested that AMU should either be called 'Aligarh University' or be named after its founder, Sir Syed Ahmed Khan, said the report. A similar reason is given for the recommendation of changing BHU's name too. The logic being given for this is that AMU is a centrally-funded university and is thus a secular institution.

UGC. Representational image. Ibn live

Representational image. Image courtesy: IBNLive

The other institutions subjected to the audit by UGC committees include Pondicherry University, Hemwati Nandan Bahuguna Garhwal University in Uttarakhand, Central University of Jharkhand, Allahabad University, Central University of Rajasthan, Mahatma Gandhi Antarrashtriya Hindi Vishwavidyalaya in Wardha, Central University of Jammu, Hari Singh Gour University in Madhya Pradesh and University of Tripura.

Earlier in October, it had been reported that the committee had recommended that the selection of the AMU's Vice-Chancellor should be amended in order to bring it in line with the procedure followed by other central universities. Currently, AMU uses a unique process to select the V-C wherein the university's Executive Council and AMU shortlist the candidates for the post. For most other central universities, the screening is done by a government-appointed selection committee.

It had been argued by The Wire that the AMU's process was in fact democratic, transparent and promotes university autonomy.

The audit had also said that AMU promoted "inbreeding" and did not have national character. AMU authortites had disputed the claim saying that students from 29 states study in AMU. The V-C, Professor Tariq Mansoor had said that the university's 60:40 ratio of Muslim and non-Muslim students was not a designed pattern but due to large number of courses like Arabic, Urdu and Farsi for which only Muslim students apply.

Updated Date: Oct 09, 2017 09:43 AM

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