IIIT Bill gets Parliament's nod

The Indian Institutes of Information and Technology (IIIT) Bill, 2014, was passed by Rajya Sabha by a voice vote. It had received the Lok Sabha's nod on November 26.

HRD Minister Smriti Irani said students passing from these institutes will now get degrees and the government would make all efforts to attract the best of faculties. She in particular referred to the agonies of the students of IIIT-Kancheepuram who were awaiting their degrees since 2008 due to non-passage of legislations governing IIITs.

Allaying apprehensions, she said the reservation policy will also be applicable to the IIITs in student admission and in recruitment of teaching and non-teaching staff. Replying to members' comments on the autonomy of these institutes, Irani said, "The governance structure of these institutes will be like that of the IITs and NITs which were based on the Central Universities Act as passed by Parliament."

The passage of the bill gives the four institutes -- IIIT -Allahabad, IIIT-Gwalior, IIIT Design and Manufacturing Jabalpur and IIIT Design and Manufacturing Kancheepuram -- the status of 'institutes of national importance'. The Act will give these institutions independent status with uniform policy framework. The declaration of the IIITs as institutions of national importance is being initiated with a view to providing manpower of global standards for the information technology industry. Irani made it clear that these institutes will be "autonomous" and UGC role will be to only notify the nomenclature of the courses.
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