The Union Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) on November 4, 2017 formed a three-member committee to monitor and suggest regulatory mechanism for the working of deemed universities across the country.
As per reports, the panel comprising former chief justice of Patna High Court L Narasimhan Reddy, additional secretary in the MHRD Sukhbir Singh Sandhu and All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) chairman Anil Sahasrabuddhe will examine and suggest a regulatory road map for deemed universities and will submit its report to the MHRD.
The panel will submit its suggestions to the Union Ministry in four months following which the ministry will take action against the deemed universities within a month. The government will file an affidavit in the top court informing about the action being taken on or before August 31 next year.
This decision came from the MHRD after the Supreme Court asked the MHRD to set up a panel of eminent persons from the field of education, investigation and administration to examine issues related to distance education being provided by the deemed universities and suggest a regulatory mechanism for them.
According to media reports, the Supreme Court had on November 3, 2017 restrained educational institutions from providing courses in subjects like engineering in the distance education mode.
The top court cancelled the degrees awarded by four deemed universities — JRN Rajasthan Vidyapeeth, Institute of Advanced Studies in Education in Rajasthan, Allahabad Agricultural Institute and Vinayaka Mission Research Foundation, Tamil Nadu — as they were conducting distance education programmes in technical education without necessary approval including that from the University Grants Commission (UGC) and the AICTE.
“The committee is likely to examine the issues whether more institutes were given permission by UGC to conduct distance education programme in technical education,” the MHRD said in a statement.
“The committee will also suggest a road map for strengthening and setting up of oversight and regulatory mechanism in the field of higher education and allied issues,” the statement added.
“The MHRD will examine the report and action will be taken accordingly,” the statement added further.
The apex court had also restrained all deemed-to-be universities to carry on any courses in distance education mode from the academic session 2018-2019 onwards unless a permission is given to them to conduct such courses in distance education mode.