Chennai: With demonetisation having affected people in all spectrums of society, the University Grants Commission (UGC) has asked all the universities to involve students in a campaign for promoting digital economy. MHRD has launched the Vittiya Saksharata Abhiyan (Visaka), a campaign for promoting digital economy through youth volunteers from the higher educational institutions of the country. The campaign may be run for a month between December 12, 2016, and January 12, 2017.
In a circular to the vice-chancellors of all affiliating universities, UGC secretary Jaspal S. Sandhu said, “The participation of youths in the higher educational institutions in the campaign is highly relevant because they would be the main beneficiaries in creating a digital economy — free of corruption, black money, completely transparent.” “It is, therefore, essential that the heads of all institutions educate and train their students in the various modes of digital payments and encourage them to join as volunteers in this campaign,” he urged the universities.
An important component of this campaign is to ensure that every campus becomes completely cashless by adopting digital payment systems in all its receipts, payments and transactions within the campus.
But, the top universities in the state said they have gone for cashless operations two to three years back. “Anna University has introduced online transactions for all its payments in 2013. We are collecting the exam fees and tuition fees in online mode only. We also plan to introduce an online mode to collect exam fees from affiliated college students,” said S.Ganesan, registrar, Anna University.
For the ease of operations and to avoid paper transactions, the University of Madras also has gone to the cashless mode. “Now, we will try to implement the cashless transactions wherever it is possible,” said P.David Jawahar, registrar, University of Madras. “But, the university’s senate and syndicate committees will take a decision on giving credits to the students who take part in the campaign for the digital economy,” he said.
Some professors in the university have expressed concern about involving the students in such a campaign. “The demonetisation is a controversial issue and we don’t know how to involve our students in this campaign,” they wondered.