House passes Bill to amend CMJ University Act

SHILLONG: The Assembly on Friday passed the CMJ University (Amendment) Bill, 2019 with Education Minister Lahkmen Rymbui saying that retaining the CMJ University Act 2009 may not be in the interest of the student community and the public.
The minister was replying to an amendment motion brought by Congress MLA PT Sawkmie against the CMJ University (Amendment) Bill, 2019 on the concluding day of the Autumn Session of the Assembly.
Rymbui said the Bill may not be amended. and should be retained in its present form.
Rymbui refuted Sawkmie’s statement that the government is giving oxygen to the university while also admitting that it is constrained to do so. He said that the CMJ University (Amendment) Bill, 2019 proposes to amend the CMJ University Act, 2009.
The amendment Bill seeks to make the Act conform to the observations of the Supreme Court passed in the case of Prof Yashpal vs. State of Chhattisgarh.
He said that the Bill seeks to regulate the private universities by amending the existing provisions on several matters dealing with affiliation of colleges, off-campus centre, outside the territorial jurisdiction of Meghalaya, off-shore campuses etc. He added that the amendments to remove the inconsistencies are being made, to not only the CMJ University, but to all other private universities.
He said that some of the amendments made to the CMJ University Act, 2009 are not to allow the university to have off-shore campuses outside the state or abroad and also not allow affiliation by it. Further, any direction of closure of the university or cancellation of degrees or stoppage of admission and any other matter involving the interest of the state government shall be issued by the Visitor after due consultation with the state government.
“The conferment of honorary degree or distinction shall be with approval of the Visitor. The procedure of utilization of the endowment fund has also been formulated by the amendment,” he said.
Rymbui also said that responsibility has also been fixed on the University with regard to the completion of the course studies of the last batch of students if there is any dissolution of the University.
Further, the establishment, maintenance of standards and any other matter concerning the university including constituent colleges, study centres and regional centres have been brought under the ambit of the Meghalaya Private Universities (Regulation of Establishment and Maintenance of Standards) Act, 2012 and also the UGC (Establishment and Maintenance of Standards in Private Universities) Regulations, 2003.
The amendment Bill was passed by the Assembly.

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