Nation Current Affairs 22 Jan 2019 Memorandum of Unders ...

Memorandum of Understanding undermines University autonomy

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | VINOD NEDUMUDY
Published Jan 22, 2019, 1:25 am IST
Updated Jan 22, 2019, 1:25 am IST
This could mean that the land can be given to another agency without even seeking the permission of the university.
MG University
 MG University

KOCHI: The controversy over the handing over of the stadium complex of the MG University to the Kerala Sports Council (KSC) has acquired a new dimension with the draft memorandum of understanding (MoU) between the two in this regard revealing contradicting clauses, betraying an attempt to steamroll the very idea of autonomy of a university. 

As per the draft MoU, prepared in 2017, the stadium complex comprising 10 acres, new students' hostel and the buildings housing the School of Physical Education and Sports Sciences will be handed over to KSC. The university syndicate is set to ratify the MoU at its meeting on Tuesday.

 

While the third clause of the MoU stipulates that "the ownership of the land shall remain with the second party (university)", the eighth clause reads, ‘the second party shall give at least two weeks advance notice period to the first party (KSC) or the person authorised by the first party if a competition/camp etc is being scheduled in this centre. The second party shall use the play fields on time-sharing basis..."

The next clause in effect undermines the autono-mous character of the university: "The first party shall, if needed, delegate the responsibility of operation of the facility to any official/government-quasi government organisations/institutions with the prior approval of the government.” This could mean that the land can be given to another agency without even seeking the permission of the university. Ettumanoor MLA Suresh Kurup who proposed the idea had told DC on Sunday that university events will have unfettered access to the stadium.

 

It is being pointed that the aborted agreement entered with the Kerala Cricket Association to part with three acres of the stadium complex in 2008 had better provisions, including full ownership of the property.

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