Srinagar: Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha Wednesday stressed the need to develop a pragmatic roadmap to enhance the potential of human resources and progressively transform J&K universities into economic growth centres.
An official spokesman in a statement issued here said that chairing the first meeting of J&K Higher Education Council here at Raj Bhawan auditorium, the LG said, “Our Higher Education ecosystem needs to re-align itself to meet the needs of the present-day challenges and be fully geared to participate in the development taking place in different sectors of J&K.”
He advised expanding collaborations with other stakeholders, especially in the sectors like agriculture and tourism.
“Increased technological input in agriculture is the need of the hour. Universities need to closely work with this sector, facilitate mechanisation and undertake value-added tasks for economic connectivity and prosperity of the villages,” the LG said.
He said that the J&K government aimed to create a global cadre of skilled youth and the colleges, the universities needed to make them competitive and also bridge the employable skill gap.
The LG also sought valuable suggestions from the members of the council for better utilisation of the education budget.
He said that the government would ensure the effective implementation of the recommendations of the council.
The LG appreciated the efforts of eminent educationist and former Vice Chancellor of Delhi University Dinesh Singh, Director of Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru, Prof G Rangarajan, Prof Kavi Arya of Computer Science, IIT Bombay, VC Jamia Millia Islamia Prof Najma Akhtar, and other members of the council for the ongoing work to transform the higher education ecosystem of J&K.
The meeting held a threadbare discussion on the implementation of National Education Policy (NEP)- 2020 in the colleges and universities across J&K, improving accountability and responsiveness in the system, encouraging research, innovation, skill development, capacity building, and competitiveness, enhancing employability, integrating technology for transforming education, multidisciplinary education, flexibility, student mobility, and increasing access through digital learning.
Discussions were also held on the role of higher education in the implementation of Gati Shakti, policy formation, vision 2047, conducting teacher-student exchange programmes, mapping and sharing of resources, collaborations, and MoUs with international institutions, adopting best practices, encouraging climate change study, identifying gaps, and preparing actions plans accordingly.
The meeting further discussed encouraging student participation, especially girls in sports, cultural, and other such activities.
Principal Secretary to the Government, Higher Education Department, Rohit Kansal presented a detailed overview of the higher education sector in J&K, a roadmap for institutional accreditations, and the future readiness of the department.
He informed about the capacity building, training and mentoring programmes, student feedback and faculty evaluation, growth and development mechanisms, gross enrolment and gender parity ratio, Aadhaar-based biometric attendance system for teachers, adoption of e-Samarth in colleges and universities, and registration of students with Academic Bank of Credits.
“All eligible colleges will ensure NAAC accreditation in the academic year-2022-23. We are also ensuring that the Uniform Academic Calendar for J&K will be followed in letter and spirit,” Kansal said.
Advisor to LG Rajeev Rai Bhatnagar, Chief Secretary Arun Kumar Mehta, former vice-chancellor of Delhi University Dinesh Singh, Vice Chancellor of University of Kashmir (KU) Prof Nilofar Khan, Vice Chancellor of University of Jammu (JU) Prof Umesh Rai, Vice Chancellor of Islamic University of Science and Technology (IUST) Prof Shakil Ahmad Romshoo, Vice Chancellor of Baba Ghulam Shah Badshah University (BGSBU) Prof Akbar Masood, Vice Chancellor of Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi, Prof Najma Akhtar, Director of Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru, Prof G Rangarajan, Principal of ICSC, Srinagar Sheikh Ajaz Bashir, and Principal of Government Degree College, Bani, Vishal Sharma attended the meeting and gave their suggestions on the reforms and necessary interventions required for improving quality of learning and teaching in the higher education sector of J&K.