Srinagar: Sher-e-Kashmir-Kashmir University of Agricultural Science and Technology (SKUAST-K) has moved up to sixth in the list of agricultural universities in India, leaving behind its counterpart in the Jammu region. To reach number rank, the university must have an uninterrupted internet connection, absence of student unrest and a general atmosphere of political stability, says Dr Sameera Qayoom, ICAR Nodal Officer and Chief from the Agromet unit to SKUAST.
She said that in recent years, starting in 2016 in particular, long internet shutdowns in the valley have made it difficult for researchers to publish their papers in various journals, despite the papers being ready. Another obstacle arises when it comes to attracting foreign scholars and visiting professors to the university. “It’s better to have as many as possible,” she said. “But in 2016, we only had one international student here, although after the improvement of the situation, we have eight on the reels. There is still a shortage of visiting professors at the university.
She added that the university must also have professors with doctorates from other universities, which has not been possible so far.
The university’s own sources of income are also limited. Introducing new technologies to the university could create avenues, she said, but they are only possible with government funding.
“In the rest of the settings, the university is doing better now. It has a good teacher-student ratio, facilities are growing, research is improving, ”she said.
However, his counterpart in Jammu, despite peaceful working conditions, is lagging behind. Its rank is 34th, improved from 37, and has fewer courses and disciplines to offer. In Kashmir, SKUAST offers courses in seven faculties, including agriculture, fisheries, veterinary sciences, horticulture, agricultural engineering and forestry.