Cotton College to become history; Government plans new University

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Guwahati | March 2, 2017 6:38 PM

The historic Cotton College will cease to exist with the Assam government today proposing to convert it into a university to sort out "several conflicting issues" with the existing Cotton College State University.

Cotton College, Himanta Biswa Sarma, Government in Higher Education Department, Cotton College State University, North eastThe premier education institute of the North East, which was established in 1901 in Guwahati, will give away all its assets, funds and other properties to the proposed Cotton University once The Cotton University Bill, 2017, is passed.(Representative image, Reuters)

The historic Cotton College will cease to exist with the Assam government today proposing to convert it into a university to sort out “several conflicting issues” with the existing Cotton College State University. The premier education institute of the North East, which was established in 1901 in Guwahati, will give away all its assets, funds and other properties to the proposed Cotton University once The Cotton University Bill, 2017, is passed.

“During the course of functioning of the Cotton College State University, several conflicting issues have cropped up during the last four or five years of its existence.

The issues are related to both academic and administrative affairs,” Assam Education Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said in the statement of the Bill tabled in Assam Assembly.

The state government-controlled Cotton College State University was established in 2011 in order to give a fillip to Cotton College, but retaining the heritage college.

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“Apart from these, there were other fundamental issues to be sorted out to convert Cotton College State University into a leading University of the country keeping in view its past glory and fine legacy.

“For the growth of the new University towards the desired path, such vexed issues are required to be addressed in an effective manner.

“Keeping in view the above background, the Government in Higher Education Department desires to bring this Bill for merger of the Cotton College and the Cotton University,” Sarma said in the Bill.

With coming into effect of this Act, the Cotton College State University Act, 2011 shall stand repealed.

One of the conflicting issues witnessed in recent years affecting the Cotton College and Cotton College State University was status of the teaching staff of the college, some of whom wanted to be moved to the varsity automatically.

This issue remain unresolved as the new Bill proposed to appoint faculties through a proper selection process.

“The teachers of the University may be appointed by the Executive Council after considering the recommendations of a Selection Committee consisting of the Vice-Chancellor and such other person or persons as per rules and regulations of the University,” the Bill said.

Regarding the existing staff, it said all posts of Cotton College and Cotton College State University, including the vacant ones, are transferred immediately to Cotton University with effect from the date of commencement of the Act. more

The Bill, however, is non-committal on whether the existing teachers of the two institutes will be absorbed in the new university or not.

“The existing teachers and staff of the Cotton College and Cotton College State University shall constitute a special cadre with respect to their service conditions at the time of their appointments,” it added.

Also the present Principal of Cotton College shall hold an administrative or academic post in the new University.

Meanwhile, the Bill clarified the concern of continuation of the Higher Secondary classes, which are an integral part of Cotton College, and said it will remain a part of the varsity.

The Governor of Assam shall be the Chancellor of the proposed Cotton University, it added.

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