GUWAHATI, March 25 � The Cotton College community as a whole has stood up against the reported move of the State government to bifurcate the historic college and the university, which was established to fulfil the popular demand for upgrading the centurion college into a university.
The Cotton College State University (CCSU) Executive Council, in its fifth meeting held on February 8, called for steps to merge the Cotton College with the CCSU to make both of them a single entity and to make the CCSU a unitary, non-affiliating one with its Vice Chancellor remaining as the �single academic and administrative/executive head of the university�.
It further said, �In the best interest of students and in tune with some of the best educational institutions in our country, including the IITs, IISERs, Presidency University, Ambedkar University of Delhi, and closer to home Tezpur University, to name a few, undergraduate, postgraduate and research activities should all be directly under the university�.
Moreover, it said, �The existing regular, sanctioned faculty positions of Cotton College should be all transferred to the university, along with the existing regular faculty in the positions they currently occupy. The detailed modalities may be worked out in consultation with the government authorities. In future they should be subject to university rules and regulations. Their pay and pensions should be fully protected by the Government of Assam. All vacant positions at present and in future should be recruited by Cotton College State University by following university procedures, rules and regulations.�
Besides, it said, �The existing regular, sanctioned staff positions (non-teaching, including scientific and technical support staff and library staff) of Cotton College should also be all transferred to the university, along with the existing staff members in the positions they currently occupy��
It also said that a Cotton Junior College should be established for the higher secondary students with a Principal at its head and administratively independent of the university. This junior college may continue operating from the premises of the university availing of all the university facilities and being taught by the university faculty till alternative arrangements are made within a fixed time frame of about five years.
CCSU Executive Council member and former Director of IIT Guwahati Prof Gautam Barua said, �Bifurcation of the CCSU and Cotton College would not be a good solution. Let CCSU encompass the college and emerge as a single entity. However, there should be a separate provision to run the existing higher secondary section of the college independent of the university.�
Former Principal of Cotton College Prof Dilip Barua said, �We don�t want a situation in which Cotton College and CCSU will have different emblems, flags, students� and teachers� unions. Both the college and the university have to be moulded as one institution with one system. The sooner the present problems are sorted out, the better for the academic and administrative environment of this great institution.�
The Cotton College Union Society (CCUS), in a memorandum to the Chief Minister, who is also the Chancellor of the CCSU, on November 8, 2014, demanded, among others, flawless legal steps to make Cotton College and CCSU a single entity.
The Cotton College Teachers� Association (CCTA) has also called for steps to keep the spirit of the preamble of the CCSU Act, 2011. A recent CCTA memorandum to the State�s Education Minister said, �The original spirit of the preamble of the Cotton College State University Act, 2011, i.e., upgradation of the historic Cotton College into a university, should be upheld in letter and spirit.�
Cotton College Alumni Association general secretary Dr Satyendra Kumar Choudhury said, �For the greater interest of the State�s academia, Cotton College should be merged with the CCSU. The latter should accommodate all the departments, and teaching and non-teaching staff of the former in tune with the very spirit of the CCSU Act.�