Education tribunal bill to address future disputes: Sibal

A bill to create a mechanism for providing speedy resolution of disputes pertaining to higher education institutions was today taken up by Lok Sabha.

New Delhi: A bill to create a mechanism for
providing speedy resolution of disputes pertaining to higher
education institutions was today taken up by Lok Sabha with
HRD Minister Kapil Sibal saying it would provide an
architecture for resolving issues of the future.

The Educational Tribunals Bill, 2010, moved by Sibal,
proposed to set up a two-tier structure of Educational
Tribunals at the national and state level to adjudicate on the
entire gamut of disputes that arise in the higher education
system.

The Union Cabinet had cleared the bill on Monday after it
had been introduced in the Lok Sabha and taken up by a
Parliamentary Standing Committee earlier.

According to the Bill, the tribunals would act as forums
for fast-track and speedy resolution of issues in institutions
in order to build an effective system of checks and balances
in higher education.

The state tribunals would adjudicate matters concerning
teachers, employees and students of institutions in the
respective states.

The national tribunal would deal with all matters
concerning regulatory bodies in higher education and also
matters involving institutes located in two or more states.

The bill also provided for imprisonment up to three years
or fine of Rs 10 lakh or both to those who fail to comply with
the orders of the state or the national tribunals.
The Standing Committee had recommended several changes,
apart from pointing out that the bill was drafted in haste
without proper consultation, particularly with the private
sector. However, the Ministry has not accepted any of the
recommendations.

Moving the Bill, Sibal said this was the first of a
string of four bills to reform higher education that his
ministry proposed to bring to the Parliament, including one to
curb educational malpractices and another for compulsory
accreditation of educational institutions.

Sibal said the bill proposed to provide for the future,
considering the fact that India would need 800 more
universities and another 35,000 colleges by 2020.
"By no way the government can build and set up these
number of colleges and universities. So the players will be
different and the system will be different. This will throw up
a lot of disputes that will increase exponentially," he said.

Noting that the country was not prepared for the future,
he said the bill was to provide an architecture for the
future.
"Time has changed. What we have to deal with the past is
no more relevant today. What we need is for the future and
this is the opportunity to provide for it," he said appealing
for unanimity in passage of the Bill.

PTI

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