SKUAST-K Scientists and Teachers Association (SSTA) today resolved to oppose any decision aimed at establishing a horticulture university at the cost of SKUAST-K.
Dr S A Dar, president SSTA said the state government "in an order has proposed to amend the SKUAST Act, 1982, which is an unwise move for the reason it is a policy matter which falls under the jurisdiction of various statutory bodies of SKUAST-K."
He said such matters as per the SKUAST Act have to be decided by the university council headed by the Governor J&K, who is the Chancellor of the University.
"The government order proposing the amendment is undermining the statutory bodies. The government decision will take away the autonomy of our institution", Dar said.
The chancellor in the recently concluded 32nd council meeting had already stressed for the need of a horticulture policy in the state vis-à-vis strengthening the faculty of horticulture and advised against any "hurried decision to set up a university of horticulture," it said in a statement.
SSTA demands that "if the present government is serious enough in establishing a horticulture university, it should not be merely a cosmetic exercise."
"Establishing a new university means setting up a new infrastructure, creation of new jobs from auxiliary staff to the faculty. To establish a university in an existing university is just befooling the people and robbing the resources of the parent University," he said.
According to the president SSTA the "hasty" and "ill-conceived" decision of establishing Horticulture University at any campus of SKUAST-K will paralyze and impede the functioning of the already existing "acclaimed agricultural university."
"We have opposed the move in past and we will continue to fight for the interests of SKUAST-K in future as well, come what may" the president said.