The Jammu and Kashmir government has decided to introduce the “cluster university concept” and a legislation would be brought in the January 2016 budget session on this, as the Cabinet has given its nod for the same.
According to state Education Minister Nayeem Akhtar, two cluster universities would be established in Jammu and Kashmir regions and five colleges each from the region would be the part of these universities. In a press conference, he said that it is a new concept and he has decided to introduce it in the state to boost academics and research. Akhtar said that funds for the two cluster universities would come from the Rashtriya Uchchtar Shiksha Abhiyan, as the cluster universities project is a component of the same scheme. He said that a grant of Rs 55 crore each has been provided under the scheme for the development of additional infrastructure for the universities in Srinagar and Jammu, adding that the Cabinet has already given its nod for the creation of 124 additional posts for the two universities.
Akhtar said that the two universities will give students of the state an opportunity to join higher education within the state instead of getting “trapped” in the hands of unrecognised institutions for new courses outside the state. He said that the government will introduce latest job-oriented courses at the under-graduate, post-graduate and diploma levels so that students from the cluster universities easily get jobs. The two cluster universities would be independent entities and would be headed by vice-chancellors.