New Delhi: In view of the short duration of the Winter Session, the HRD Ministry would focus on only one crucial bill for passage among a host of legislations on education sector pending in Parliament.
The Ministry would push for the long pending Educational Tribunals Bill, 2010, passed by the Lok Sabha in 2010, sources said. The bill is listed for the ensuing session.
At present, close to a dozen bills including Prohibition of Unfair Practices in Technical Education Bill and National Accreditation Regulatory Authority of Higher Educations Bill are yet to be cleared.
The Educational Tribunal Bill was passed by Lok Sabha in 2010 but has been struck in the Rajya Sabha due to lack of consensus among political parties who had been opposing various provisions in it.
The bill seeks to set up national and state level tribunals to look into the disputes related to higher educational institutions, students and the faculty.
It specifies guidelines under which unfair practices such as charging capitation fees, demanding donations, questionable admission processes etc could be treated as civil or criminal offences.
Given the inordinate delay in passage of this legislation, the ministry had earlier delinked it from the Prohibition of Unfair Practices in Technical Education Bill to ensure that the delay in passage of one of them does not affect the other.
Sources in the Ministry said they were now confident of passage of the Tribunal Bill in the session provided the Parliament is allowed to function smoothly.
"Much of the groundwork has been done to evolve a consensus on the bill with some tweaking. We are optimistic this time around," said a ministry official.
The Association of Self-Financing Universities had voiced objections to this bill along with the above mentioned bills which are pending in Parliament, terming them as unconstitutional.
It said the bills proposed to regulate all universities and higher education institutions are "completely unconstitutional" in nature.