Deemed University status under MHRD lens

Deemed University status under MHRD lens

New Delhi: After reviewing the functioning of 130 deemed universities, undergoing scrutiny for the past four months, the Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry has taken a strict stance and has declared that many of theseinstitutions mar the status of being a "University".

"These varsities have been functioning like 
private limited family-run companies," said an official from the HRD Ministry.

After a thorough analysis, HRD ministry's review committee pointed out institution-wise irregularities. The final decision on these institutions, however, rests with HRD minister Mr. Kapil Sibal.

"Our work is to provide the facts sans mutation. We do not recommend action but have just highlighted some flaws that the University Grants Commission's (UGC) review report did not state," said a source.

The deemed universities, however, are already prepared with their counter remarks to the ministry's report on the basis of the clean chit they received from the UGC panel.

They are ready to face any opposition in the future upon the basis of the law, which states that a deemed status to a university is given by the ministry on UGC's recommendation only.

According to sources, precipitating UGC's stance is a strategy by a section in the ministry to divert the attention from the equation they once enjoyed together while giving the deemed status.

"The biggest blunder in the case of private deemed universities is the way in which they have established study centres all over India", says the report.

"Deemed universities of South with their study centres in North (mainly Delhi and
Uttar Pradesh) have many students being trained by irregular faculty. Distance education is no more an effort to bring knowledge to your home but has now outgrown into a business endeavor of minting money. All this is due to the glaring loopholes in the guideline laid down by the UGC, which flouts the parameters," said an official.

The abysmal condition in which the deemed universities in South India and UP are, do not accredit the status of being called a university, the report added.

According to an official, "The administrative and fee structures are not at all in tandem with each other. It is on this aspect that the report focuses its attention and brings out the evident irregularities."

The report draws attention upon numerous instances where non-family members were introduced as vice-chancellors, just a few days prior to making a presentation before the committee. As a matter of chance, when the committee asked them about the preceding VC, random names of promoter's relatives came out.

"It was a normal course where the family members made presentations in lieu of theuniversities," said an official.

SCOPUS, being the largest abstract and citation database of research literature and quality web sources, does not include such private deemed varsities, which shows their shoddy research output.

An official during the presentations said that many institutions do not even know about SCOPUS.

Infact, many of the government-run deemed varsities lack the transparency to function with special emphasis on their administrative structure.

Classifying the deemed varsities into three groups, the report categorizes them based on their credibility.

The first, consisting of universities with exceptional facilities, the second, withinstitutions that meet all parameters and the last, found lacking in various aspects.

The report has even censured regulatory bodies like 
AICTE, UGC and NCTE charging them for their lack of coordination with the deemed varsities.


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