No MCI admission nod for Jharkhand’s 3 new medical colleges this year

Source: hindustantimes.com

The Medical Council of India (MCI) has denied permission to three newly set up medical colleges in Jharkhand, at Palamu, Hazaribagh and Dumka, to start academic sessions from 2019, citing faculty deficiency.

The state government had sought permission to start classes for 50 MBBS seats in each of the three medical colleges from the current session.

In the list released by the MCI for availability of MBBS seats in medical colleges across country, names of these three from Jharkhand are missing.

At present, the three medical colleges have only caretaker principals in the name of college administrator as well as faculty member.

While state’s health secretary Nitin Madan Kulkarni was available for comment, Dr Arun Kumar, superintendent of MGMMCH, who is the acting principal of Hazaribagh Medical College, said the permission was not granted for 2019 session due to 100% faculty deficiency.

“The college has all the infrastructure to begin operations, but no teachers. Appointment of faculty members is under progress,” he said.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had inaugurated buildings of these three colleges constructed at a cost of Rs 885 crore on February 17 from Hazaribagh and the state government had promised that all three institutions would begin functioning from this July. The then union minister Jayant Sinha and chief minister Raghubar Das were also present on the occasion. The Prime Minister had also laid foundation of four 500-bed hospitals at Palamu, Dumka, Jamshedpur and Hazaribagh.

But even after four months of inauguration by Prime Minister, the state government has failed to appoint even a single teacher in all three medical colleges.

A senior official of state health department said that due to imposition of model code of conduct for parliamentary elections, the government’s hands were tied for three months from March to May, due to which appointment of faculty members in these medical colleges could not be done.

“By the time model code was lifted, the MCI deadline had ended,” the official said, requesting anonymity as the health secretary is himself dealing with the MCI on the issue.

The official said reluctance of doctors to join medical colleges of state had emerged as major hurdle in appointing teachers. On June 3, government had organised walk-in interviews for senior residents at Ranchi, but only 30% candidates turned up.


Nalanda University’s crucial board meeting in Delhi on Thursday

Source: hindustantimes.com

Nalanda University (NU) is set to hold its first governing board (GB) meeting since February 2018 at its Delhi office on Thursday.

The 17th GB meeting is crucial as it will pave the way for shifting of academic activities to its upcoming sprawling 455-acre campus to the north of Rajgir hills, besides approving new proposals and reviewing ongoing admissions.

The varsity’s board was re-constituted in November 2016 with all new members. The lone member of the Nalanda Mentor Group (NMG) retaining his position and the Indian government’s representative in the new GB was former Rajya Sabha Member of Parliament N K Singh, presently chairman of the 15th finance commission.

In January 2017, the university also got a new Chancellor in Dr Vijay Bhatkar, following the resignation of George Yeo on November 25 in the wake of dissolution of NMG. In May, Prof Sunaina Singh also took over as the new vice-chancellor.

Set up in 2014 to recreate the glory and academic excellence of ancient Nalanda and serve as an intellectual bridge between India and East Asia, the NU witnessed a flurry of activities in 2016-17, which led to a complete change of guard.

There were also reports of faculty attrition in NU, but the V-C played it down, saying it was nothing abnormal.

“Some people have left as their term ended, others left as they got better avenues in locations of their choice, while there were also those who found it tough to continue in the disciplined atmosphere that we are striving to enforce on the campus. We have enough faculty members of quality for our schools and new ones are also coming in,” said V-C Sunaina Singh, who took over in the wake of sexual harassment slur on the NU.

However, the biggest plus for NU is that it is now set to move to its campus. Former President Pranab Mukhejee had laid the foundation stone of the campus on August 27, 2016.

“The work is on schedule and the first phase comprising five main buildings has been completed. The campus, likely to be fully ready by 2020, will go beyond the highest green building features as per government guidelines, i.e. a rating of 5 under GRIHA. We plan to start teaching this year itself from the new campus, as adequate facilities are ready now,” said the VC.

At present, NU has four schools, but a few new centres are in the pipeline, including one on the Bay of Bengal Studies, which was announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi while addressing the member states of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) at Katmandu on August 31, 2018.

The Government of India would also cover 30 scholarships to member states (Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and Thailand) to conduct research on Bay of Bengal region at the NU. Another centre in the offing is on sustainable development.

At present, admissions in NU is on and the first cycle has been completed, while the second cycle is set to begin.

NU also plans to start Ph.D programmes from this year, which was earlier approved by the academic council.