Three minority universities proposed to be set up

By Richa Sharma, IANS,

New Delhi : Three central minority universities may soon be set up in the country if a proposal forwarded by the ministry of minority affairs gets clearance from the human resource development (HRD) ministry.

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A group of Muslim scholars recently met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and appealed for expediting work on the universities where students from the Muslim community would be given preference.

“On the prime minister’s order, an expert committee has been formed to negotiate on the proposal with the HRD ministry,” an official from the ministry of minority affairs said.

The committee, comprising eminent members from all walks of life, will meet the HRD ministry officials later this month, the official said.

The central government has been asked to provide Rs.2.5 billion for setting up three universities proposed to come up in Karnataka (Bangalore), Bihar (Kishenganj) and Rajasthan (Ajmer).

The university in Bangalore will reportedly be called Tipu Sultan University of Science and Technology while that in Kishenganj will be called Rafi Ahmad Kidwai University of Health Science and the one at Ajmer will be named Khwaja Gharib Nawaz University.

The project, being coordinated with the Maulana Azad Education Foundation, will come up on the land of the Waqf Board. The Waqf Council is reportedly in contact with three state governments over allocation of land for the universities.

Ghayyur Alam, a senior official of the Maulana Azad Education Foundation, said: “The Waqf Board cannot allocate the land on its own. We need the support of state governments. We have begun identifying land and, as soon as it is done, the process will be speeded up at every level”.