They include a postgraduate women's hostel building and a conference hall
CHENNAI: The University of Madras on Tuesday added new facilities at its basic sciences campus in Taramani. They included a postgraduate women's hostel building, four modern classrooms, a conference hall and LAN facility for the Central Library.
The facilities were set up at the Dr. A.L. Mudaliar Post-Graduate Institute of Basic Medical Sciences under the University Grant's Commission's "University with Potential for Excellence Programme." The university was one of the five institutions to be chosen for the programme, which involved UGC aid to the tune of Rs. 30 crore.
The Taramani campus will also feature A Genetic and Microbiology block (Rs. 2 crore), a Technology Business Incubator (Rs. 5 crore) and a Central Instrumentation Facility (Rs. 1 crore).
Formally launching the new facilities, V.N. Rajasekharan Pillai, Vice-Chairman, UGC, said modern infrastructure was a vital component of the efforts to improve higher education, especially science and technology. Alongside state-of-the-art facilities, it was also important for young researchers to be internationally competitive.
One of the thrust areas for the UGC is strengthening undergraduate education not only in science but also in subjects such as social sciences, humanities, language and literature, he said.
G. Padmanabhan, former director, Indian Institute of Sciences, Bangalore, pointed to the dismal contribution of universities to research.
Barely 10 per cent of research publications could be sourced to universities with the rest contributed by institutions such as CSIR and ICMR.
Universities should step up their research contributions, he said.
Gunashekharan, UGC joint secretary, said the Madurai Kamaraj University had been selected for the second phase of institutions to be promoted under the UGC programme.
S.P. Thyagarajan, Vice-Chancellor, University of Madras, said the coming projects at the Taramani campus were scheduled to be completed this year.
Anne Mary Fernandez, registrar, and M. Michael Aruldhas, director, Dr. A.L. Mudaliar Post-Graduate Institute of Basic Medical Sciences, spoke.