UGC grants autonomy to 60 higher educational institutions, Javadekar terms it ‘historic move’

The University Grants Commission granted autonomy to 60 Higher Educational Institutions which have maintained high standards of excellence, including JNU, BHU, AMU, TERI and University of Hyderabad. Union Minister for Human Resource Development Prakash Javadekar who made the announcement on Tuesday called it a ‘historic’ move.

“The government is striving to introduce a liberalised regime in the education sector and emphasis is on linking autonomy with quality,” the minister said.

Javadekar said that the 60 Higher Educational Institutions which have been granted autonomy include 52 universities — 5 central universities, 21 state universities, 24 deemed universities, and 2 private universities.

The five central universities which have been granted autonomy include Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), Aligarh Muslim University (AMU), Banaras Hindu University (BHU), University of Hyderabad and the English and Foreign Languages University, Telangana.

The state universities which have been granted the autonomous status include Jadavpur University, Andhra University, Algappa University, National University of Law, Utkal University, Kurukshetra University, Osmania University, Guru Nanak Dev University, University of Jammu, University of Mysore, Anna University, Panjab University and University of Madras, among others.

“These universities will remain within the ambit of the UGC but will have the freedom to start new courses, off campus centers, skill development courses, research parks and any other new academic programs,” the minister said.

The HRD minister said that these institutes can also get into academic collaboration with top five hundred universities of the world.

“They will also have the freedom to hire foreign faculty, enroll foreign students, give incentive based emoluments to the faculty, enter into academic collaborations and run open distance learning programmes,” he said.

The private institutions which were selected by the UGC for the autonomous status include OP Jindal Global University, Sonipat and Pandit Deen Dayal Petroleum University.

“These institutes will not have to come to the regulator again for seeking permission because they have maintained quality and achieved a benchmark of 3.26 and above NAAC (National Accreditation and Assessment Council) ranking,” he added.

The HRD minister said that eight colleges were granted autonomy and they will be free to set their own syllabus, hold examinations, carry out evaluation as well as declare results. In this case, only the degree will be awarded by the respective university.

These eight colleges include Yashwantrao Chavan Institute of Science, Satara; Sri Sivasubramaniya Nadar College of Engineering, Kalavakkam; G Narayanamma Institute of Technology Science, Hyderabad; Vivekanand College, Kolhapur; Sri Vasavi Engineering College West Godavari; Bonam Venkata Chalamayya Engineering College, East Godavari; Jai Hind College Basantsing Institute of Science, J T Lalvani College of Commerce, and Shri Vile Parle Kelavani Mandal’s Mithibai College of Arts in Mumabi.

The minister also said that a show-cause notice will be given to three deemed universities which are lacking in quality.