Deemed to be Universities will not engage in commercialisation of education: MHRD

As per the University Grants Commission (UGC) notification, the Deemed to be Universities across the country will not engage in commercialisation of education, Union Minister of State for Human Resource Development Satya Pal Singh said on Monday.

“The UGC has informed that it has notified UGC (Institutions Deemed to be Universities) Regulations, 2016. As per these regulations, no Deemed to be University shall charge any fee for an admission test other than an amount representing the reasonable cost incurred by it in conducting such test,” the minister said, adding, “As per the regulations, an institution Deemed to be University shall not engage in commercialisation of education in any manner whatsoever, and shall provide for equity and access to all deserving students.”

While replying to a question in Lok Sabha, the minister said that private universities are regulated by the UGC (Establishment and Maintenance of Standards in Private Universities) Regulations, 2003.

“Fees for admission test and tuition and other fees are decided either by the private universities themselves or by the state government concerned,” he said.

The minister, to another question on scholarshop schemes, said that the Saksham Scholarship Scheme was launched by the government for economically weaker differently abled students.

“With the objective to encourage economically weaker differently abled students to pursue technical education at Diploma and Degree levels, the Saksham Scholarship Scheme was launched in 2014-15,” the minister said.

As part of the scheme, scholarship amount of INR 30,000 is provided towards tuition fee reimbursement and INR 20000 as contingency allowance,” the union minister said.

The minister informed that over 1000 scholarships per annum are available under this scheme but the number of application received from eligible candidates every year remained low despite wide publicity.

“As the number of application received in 2016-17 still remained low, the scheme was again amended in 2017 to remove the restriction of Centralized Counselling as a criterion for selection, making differently abled students — who were directly admitted to All India Council for Technical Education approved institutions — eligible to apply for the scholarship,” he said.

The minister further informed that a committee of experts was set up to suggest measures to improve the scheme and the committee recommended that a provision should be made to support differently abled student for purchase of Aids and Assistive Devices, in cases where tuition fee was either exempted or less than INR 30,000.