With the passing of M Karunanidhi, an era has ended for Tamil Nadu politics. Since the news of his death broke away yesterday, condolence and obituaries poured from all over the country. While his loss will be felt by all and sundry, his contributions to the furtherance of education in Tamil Nadu has made sure that he will remain etched in the memories of students, former and current.
Fondly called Kalaignar, he introduced many schemes to promote education in the state. He made education free upto PUC for students in the state.
He set up the first Agricultural University at Coimbatore during his tenure from 1971 to 1976.
He also made education free for Most Backward Classes and Scheduled Castes. He also introduced single window admission system in Engineering and Medical colleges in the state. He was also instrumental in setting up Dr. Ambedkar Law University, and Periyar University in Salem.
He introduced Computer Training Scheme for Government College Students. He introduced the scheme for grant of expenses of higher education for first three rank holders at State and District levels in the 10th and 12th standard examinations from the year 1996. It was during his tenure that the common entrance examinations for professional courses was abolished and instead admission was granted based on the marks scored by students in 12th standard.
His most famous scheme, perhaps, has to be the scheme for first generation graduates. First generation students from any family were given financial aide under this scheme.
Mourning his loss, the state of Tamil Nadu had declared holiday at all schools and colleges today. TNAU postponed the signing of MoU for Industry Sponsored Candidates which was scheduled today. The Tamil Nadu Dr. M.G.R. Medical University has also postponed all theory and practicla exminatiosn which were scheduled today.
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