BHU, AMU 'secularism' row: Government won't change names, reiterates BJP

BHU, AMU 'secularism' row: Government won't change names, reiterates BJP

While BHU was not in the audit, ordered by the Ministry of Human Resource Development (HRD), the committee mentioned the Varanasi-based university in its observations about AMU. Thus UGC recommended stopping naming the universities in the name of religion.

The committee suggested that the institution should either be called just "Aligarh University" or be named after its founder, Sir Syed Ahmed Khan.

In a bid to reflect a secular character, one of five committees set up by the University Grants Commission (UGC) has suggested that the words "Muslim" and "Hindu" be removed from Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) and Banaras Hindu University (BHU). "The committee studied various aspects and I have not seen what they have said, but there is neither such decision nor is there any such intention to change the names", the HRD minister said as reported by India Today. The panel also suggested that the selection process should be tweaked to align it with the appointment procedure followed by the central universities.

The AMU audit committee consisted of IIT-Madras professor Shripad Karmalkar, IIM-Bangalore professor Sankarshan Basu, Guwahati University professor Mazhar Asif and Maharshi Dayanand Saraswati University's Vice-Chancellor Kailash Sodani.

"If the committee has made any suggestions outside its purview, we will not take cognisance of anything then", he added.

"We formed a committee to look into the administrative, academic and research audits of universities".

The suggestion of revising the name came out of the logic that since AMU is funded by the Centre, it is a secular institute, Indian Express reported the panel members as saying.

The names Banaras Hindu University and Aligarh Muslim University do not portray that these universities are not secular.

University of Rajasthan, Mahatma Gandhi Antarrashtriya Hindi Vishwavidyalaya in Wardha, Maharashtra, Hari Singh Gour University in Madhya Pradesh, University of Tripura.

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