Cabinet Clears the Bill to Make IIMs Autonomous

Sarika Rana updated on : 25 Jan 2017

The Cabinet has finally cleared the long-awaited IIM Bill to let IIMs grant degrees instead of diplomas. Get the scoop here!

IIMs get Autonomy Status

Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) have finally been allowed to grant degrees instead of diplomas that they have been demanding for years.

The Union Cabinet cleared the IIM Bill, 2017 that aims to grant ‘complete autonomy with adequate accountability’ to the top B-Schools of the country and allow them to grant degrees instead of diplomas. The Bill that has been doing rounds for several years now has finally taken a hold giving IIMs an autonomous status in terms of administration, recruitment and daily functioning.

Earlier, IIMs were not authorized to award degrees so they have been awarding post-graduate diplomas in management instead. While these diploma degrees were treated equivalent to MBAs, the equivalence is not universally recognized.

The HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar considers the approval given by the Union Cabinet is a historic decision. According to him, the bill will ensure IIMs are board driven, with the chairperson and director selected by the board, which further means neither the human resource development (HRD) ministry nor the president of India will have a say in the selection of top executives at any of the IIMs.

Controversies around the IIM Bill

The Bill became controversial because of concerns that it might crumble the autonomy of these premier institutions. The IIMs protested against the Bill in June 2015 when the first draft was put up. Before giving it a nod, HRD ministry has made quite a few changes in the draft, accommodating most of the demands of the B-schools.

What Does the Bill Say?

  1. The Bill contains a provision for a ‘Coordination Forum of IIMs’.
  2. The coordination forum, in its final shape, will have limited power and the HRD ministry will not be its convener.
  3. The coordination forum will be an advisory board, consisting of 33 members and its chairman will be selected by a search-cum-selection committee.
  4. The governing body of an IIM will have 15 members including three women members and five from the alumni community.
  5. The Bill will also grant statutory status to IIMs that will be termed institutions of national importance. Now the IIMs will be able to grant degrees instead of diplomas.
  6. The Bill provides for a periodic review of IIM’s performance by independent agencies.

With this move, IIMs will be able to get a global recognition, especially the newer institutions. All IIMs are separate autonomous bodies registered under the Societies Act.

The annual report on the IIMs will be placed in Parliament and the comptroller and auditor general will be auditing their accounts.

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