The University Grants Commission (UGC) has released a guideline emphasising a vibrant campus life, participation in sports activities and developing a Students Services Centre (SSC) for managing problems related to stress and emotional adjustment for promotion of physical fitness in higher educational institutions.
“All HEIs in India may make or amend their Ordinances, regulatory provisions, and other rules accordingly to ensure that the directions given in these guidelines are implemented in the best interest of students,” the commission said.
“The main objective of these guidelines is to promote physical fitness and sports activities among students, inculcate a positive attitude and develop a supportive network of students. These are essential to strengthen the mental well being of students to safeguard themselves against different kinds of stress, pressure and behaviour issues they face,” Jagadesh Kumar, chairman, UGC, said.
According to the guidelines for promotion of physical fitness, sports, students’ health, welfare, psychological and emotional well being at higher educational institutions of India, physical activity is not mandatory currently in spite of higher education institutions having sufficient human resources and infrastructure for such activities.
“It is a great irony that sports fee is charged from each of the students admitted in the institution but participation in sports activity or utilisation of sports facilities is done by only one or two percent of the total strength of the students in a higher education institution,” the guidelines said.
It further added that keeping in view the fact that sufficient physical activity is indispensable for developing a healthy body, participation in physical or any sports activity needs to be ensured for each student of the institution.
“It shall have the standardised, systematic arrangements within the relevant provision of ordinances to provide requisite support to students especially from rural backgrounds, female students, students from divergent cultural backgrounds, and students with special needs,” the guideline said.
The commission further added that it may come through opportunities related to academic as well as co-curricular activities besides having linkages with society and ecology through field training, job placement activities, educational tours, and summer internships.
With inputs from PTI.