Kolkata: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and urged him to instruct the education ministry to withdraw its revised guidelines with immediate effect. The revised guidelines stipulated state-aided universities to get prior consent from the ministry for holding global conferences, reported news agency PTI.
The education ministry said on January 15 that publicly-funded universities will need prior consent of the ministry if they want to hold online global conferences on issues pertaining to the security of the country or matters directly “related to India’s internal matters”.
According to Mamata, the revised guidelines have put several restrictions in respect of holding online/virtual international conferences/seminars/training even for state-aided universities. She alleged that the matter was not discussed with the state governments before the issuance of the memorandum.
“Our universities must enjoy the highest possible degree of self-governance and freedom.
“Knowledge is neither created by nor belongs to any single country and community. Reasonable regulations and restrictions are understandable. However, the restrictions imposed by the office memorandum under reference, further highlights the intention of the government of India towards centralisation of higher education system in our country,” Mamata wrote in her letter to PM Modi.