Late Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa gave importance to higher education and established a slew of colleges including arts, polytechnic and engineering, he recalled.
Continuing in her footsteps, the government carried on with the initiative to set up new institutions besidesupgrading the infrastructure of existing facilities.
In view of such initiatives, the Gross Enrolment Ratio in Tamil Nadu stood at 49 per cent, while the national average was 26.3 per cent, he noted.
Replying to DMK deputy leader Duraimurugan on splitting the Thiruvallur varsity, Palaniswami said Villupuram was backward and the move wasaimed at facilitating higher education of students from that region.
Administration would be more efficient only if universities were restructured in keeping with the establishment of more and more affiliating colleges, he said.
In Tamil Nadu, there are at least 20 state run universities including separate ones for medicine, law, sports, fisheries and music.