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IIM Bill passed: What it means for prospective students

in 2017/News by

The Indian Institute of Management Bill of 2017 which was passed by the Lok Sabha on July 28, gives degree-granting power to the prestigious institutes. It provides statutory powers to the management institutions in their running including the appointment of directors, faculty members, and gives them powers to award degrees instead of post graduate diplomas from the next session.

This IIM Bill was earlier approved by the Union Cabinet in the month of January this year. According to a PTI report, Human Resource and Development (HRD) Minister Prakash Javadekar was praised today by the opposition in the Lok Sabha for bringing a bill which seeks to usher in functional autonomy in the Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) by restricting the government role. Moving the bill for consideration and passage, Javadekar said the aim of the bill is to remove the government’s interference in IIMs. He said, “It is a historical bill which will bring a new era in management education in the country.”

The IIM Bill  has sought more autonomy and statutory status for the 20 IIMs in the country and for them to be declared as the Institute of National importance, which will now be true in practice. The proposed law makes each of the 20 Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) an ‘Institution of National Importance’ like the IITs, NITs and AIIMS. The IIMs will now be able to grant MBA degrees (instead of PGP diploma) to students. Similarly, those pursuing doctoral-level education will be awarded PhD degree instead of the title of Fellow.

The Bill further has provisions for appointment of members of the board of governors (BoG) in each of the 20 IIMs through a transparent process, while limiting even the HRD Minister’s role. It also sought to declare the IIMs as institutes of national importance and abolish the post of visitor. Currently, the President is the ‘visitor’ of the IIMs, according to a PTI report.

What does this do for the IIMs?

In India, the IIMs enjoy a market leader reputation amongst students, faculty and industry recruiters. To these 3 constituent groups, an MBA or a PGDM degree doesn’t make much of a difference. However, the IIMs also have global ambitions to be ranked among leading business schools of the world. In this quest, moving to globally accepted degree nomenclature will definitely help. Also, the IIM Bill is not only about the enabling the IIMs to offer an MBA and PhD degree, but also it gives them more autonomy to make leadership appointments. The bill transfers more controls and powers from the government to the governing board of each IIM.

 Is the Bill an advantage to Students?

Even though the AIU has granted equivalence to the PGDM degree awarded by most of the reputed institutions, this equivalence is not universally accepted, especially internationally. Students applying to doctoral programs overseas sometimes encounter difficulties in obtaining acceptance of the PGDM degree and then in turn need to obtain additional documentation or go through agencies like World Education Services (WES) in order to establish equivalence and eligibility. Comparatively the FPM program enjoys even lesser acceptance as equivalent to a PhD than a PGDM being considered equivalent to an MBA. With the passage of the IIM Bill, students graduating from the IIMs will now have degrees with globally accepted nomenclature (ie MBA & PhD) thereby further increasing the acceptance of their degrees.

Impact on other B-schools?

IIMs, by virtue of their reputation over time, have lent a lot of credence to the Post Graduate Diploma in Management (PGDM) certification. There are several other B-schools that offer PGDM or equivalent diplomas, such as XLRI – Jamshedpur, SPJIMR – Mumbai, MDI – Gurgaon etc. These B-schools now fear that with IIMs shifting to awarding MBA degrees, the value of their PGDM diplomas will drop significantly, which will put these other b-schools at serious disadvantage.

It must be understood that most of these B-schools are structured as Societies, which can not award an MBA degree. A private Institution can award degrees only if it becomes either a State University, or a Deemed University or gets affiliated to a State University.

Source- Herald , Find Your Institute

A not so typical Bengali from Bhopal who is an optimist (well, most times) and a voracious reader, who loves nothing more than coffee, all forms of chocolate and sleeping all the time. Her eternal love for Harry Potter is unshakeable. She is currently pursuing history from Miranda house, University of Delhi.

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