But he is said to have reservations on varsity bifurcation Bill

Tamil Nadu Governor Banwarilal Purohit is likely to clear a Bill envisaging 7.5% horizontal reservation in admissions to undergraduate medical courses for students from government schools in the State who qualify in the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test. But he is said to be having reservations about another Bill, pertaining to the bifurcation of Anna University.

Revealing this, a source in the State government told The Hindu that the Governor was of the view that the bifurcation scheme, as mentioned in the Bill, may not be financially sustainable for the proposed Anna Technological and Research University (ATRU), which would have to depend purely on the government’s grants.

On Tuesday, a group of senior Ministers, including School Education Minister K.A. Sengottaiyan, Fisheries Minister D. Jayakumar, Law Minister C. Ve. Shanmugam, Higher Education Minister K.T. Anbalagan and Health Minister C. Vijayabaskar, met the Governor at the Raj Bhavan and they held discussions for more than an hour.

Chief Secretary K. Shanmugam and other senior officials were also present at the meeting.

The discussion was only on the 7.5% quota Bill, according to Mr. Jayakumar.

The Fisheries Minister said the Governor was “examining” the quota Bill from various angles, adding, “We are confident that he will come out with a favourable decision on the matter.”

He said the team of Ministers had impressed upon the Governor the need for him giving his assent early to the quota Bill. Apart from the State being a “land of social justice”, he said the horizontal quota would enable more government school students to pursue medical courses.

On the issue of Anna University’s bifurcation, the government source said Mr. Purohit apparently felt that if the government considers Anna University, under the present circumstances, to be ‘overloaded’, there could be two technical universities sharing the load equally, instead of the proposed arrangement of one university having the affiliated system and another being a unitary-type institution and bringing under its fold the College of Engineering, Guindy, Alagappa College of Technology, the School of Architecture and Planning and the Madras Institute of Technology.

Though the bifurcation was originally conceived in the light of the Central government’s decision last year to provide the status of Institution of Eminence (IoE) to Anna University, Mr. Anbalagan recently went on record, stating that the university did not require the status if it meant the ‘loss’ of 69% vertical reservation and “denied admission to poor students”.

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