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India: Setback for deemed universities

Indian Students

In a setback to deemed universities in the country, the University Grants Commission (UGC), at a recent meeting in New Delhi, stuck to its earlier directive that promoters or owners of a society which promotes deemed university cannot be chancellors.

And they need to follow a lot of regulations to start an offshore campus.

But deemed university administrators are against UGC’s stance and say that Madras high court has already stayed the UGC guideline in 2011.

The ministry of human resource development (MHRD) had asked stakeholders to submit their suggestions for an amendment in the UGC (institutions deemed to be universities) regulations, 2010.

The HRD ministry forwarded the suggestions to the commission, which, during its January 10 meeting, reiterated that the deemed university should appoint an eminent educationist or a distinguished public figure other than the president of the sponsoring society or their close relative.

The commission has also come up with lot of restrictions for deemed universities to coalesce several institutions under the university’s ambit.

Speaking to Deccan Chronicle over phone from New Delhi, UGC vice-chairman, Prof H. Devaraj, confirmed that the commission had restated its stance to the HRD ministry.

“The UGC (institutions deemed to be universities) regulations, 2010 holds good for deemed universities even now and we have refused to incorporate the suggestions sent to us by MHRD,” he said.

This has come as a shock to deemed university administrators, who have raised their objections against UGC’s stance.

“The 2010 regulation is stayed by the Madras high court and so by natural legal extension is the proposed amendment. The matter is sub judice so I will not be able to comment on the legality of the proposed amendment, which has many contentious issues besides chancellor appointment,” Prof S.Vaidhyasubramaniam, dean (planning & development) at Sastra University, said while asked for his comments.

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