The Indian Institute of Management (IIM)-Sirmaur (Himachal Pradesh) has asked the Centre to intervene and convince IIM-Lucknow to reverse its decision to withdraw academic support to the institute from the next academic session.
In a letter to the HRD Ministry, IIM-Sirmaur director Neelu Rohmetra has urged the government to convince IIM-Lucknow to continue to lend its faculty to the institute.
According to Rohmetra, IIM-Lucknow conveyed its decision to stop sending its teachers to Sirmaur in January this year. “I have reported the matter to the ministry and requested them to take this up (with IIM-Lucknow),” she told The Indian Express.
“IIM-Sirmaur’s DPR (detailed project report) states that the mentor institute’s support can extend up to the year 2021. I’m not sure if they can pull out this way,” said the director.
Currently, 60 per cent of the faculty at IIM-Sirmaur is drawn from IIM-Lucknow. Rohmetra, who is the first woman to head an IIM, said she has already reached out to other B-schools for academic support.
Set up in September 2015, the institute in Himachal Pradesh is one of the seven new IIMs. Each of the new IIMs is mentored by an older institute, till a regular director is appointed by the government. The HRD Ministry appointed heads to the institutes in Nagpur, Sambalpur, Sirmaur, Bodhgaya and Vishakhapatnam in February last year. The IIMs in Jammu and Amritsar are still being mentored by IIM-Lucknow and IIM-Kozhikode, respectively.
Lucknow is the only old IIM that was asked to guide two new institutes. It handheld IIM-Sirmaur for over a year, from September 2015 to February 2017.
Although the mentor institute hands over the reins once the government appoints a regular director, it usually continues to offer academic support to the new institute. More than half of the faculty at IIM-Sambalpur, for instance, continue to come from its mentor IIM-Indore.
“My faculty are already strained. We can’t do both (support IIM-Jammu and IIM-Sirmaur). I have a limited number of faculty members, about 71 or 72 teachers. They have to teach in Lucknow, Noida (off-campus centre), Sirmaur and Jammu,” IIM-Lucknow director Ajit Prasad told The Indian Express.
“I had told Sirmaur in April last year that we will not be able to carry this (academic support) on for long. So, I advised Neelu (Rohmetra), the director, that she should develop relationship with (IIM) Rohtak, (IIM) Kashipur, (IIM) Amritsar and Chandigarh B-schools. At some point of time, we have to stop the support,” he added.
Asked about the commitment made in the IIM-Sirmaur DPR, which states that the mentor institute can extend support till 2021, Prasad said, “I don’t think so. I haven’t seen this in the DPR and the DPR was made by EdCIL (Educational Consultants India). I don’t think that’s the ministry’s viewpoint.”
The heads of both the IIMs said the HRD Ministry is yet to reach out to them to resolve the issue.