He said "The state cabinet is likely to discuss an approval for the MVEC during its meeting tomorrow. The proposal may be cleared tomorrow or latest by the next cabinet meeting on October 24. The MVEC will be the first step towards the Government's eventual objective of establishing a vocational university".
The proposed reforms are also aimed at bringing the state policies in line with the HRD Ministry's National Vocational Education Qualification Framework (NVEQF), which had identified class I to XI level of qualifications. It will be easier for an industry-employer to identify a recruit for specific skills, based on the level of qualification held by the latter.
Tope said "We wanted to be the first state in the country to have such university. The chief minister (CM) has certain reservations about the extend of need for setting up vocational university in the immediate future. The CM has, instead, suggested us to go for the MVEC first. Gujarat government has recently established a vocational university and the state will wait and see how that university flourishes before going for a vocational varsity of its own".
"As of now, there is no provision for vocational university under the state government but, the private universities bill can facilitate such move" said a member of the Swati Mujumdar panel and later told media that the passage of self-financed private universities bill, which is pending clearance before the state governor, is critical to the establishment of vocational university.
Tope said "Vocational Education in the state has remained unregulated as any private institution can start offering courses of less than nine month duration without seeking any approval from the government or state agencies. The Maharashtra state board of technical education (MSBTE) also offers a slew of vocational courses. However, there is no standardization yet."
Later, on referring to the Private Universities bill, Tope said that the deadlock over the issue of reservation at private varsities is likely to be resolved on October 18, when the governor has called a meeting of all the stake holders. Several organizations have petitioned the governor that the private universities should not be allowed to flourish without the provision of reservation. The chief minister and other senior members of the state cabinet are likely to attend this meeting.