Institutions applying for “deemed to be university” status have to be multi-disciplinary or a cluster of setups having a minimum of five departments, according to draft UGC regulations. Deemed universities will also be allowed to start off-shore campuses and admissions will be based on a testing by a government agency.
“UGC has reframed the Institutions Deemed to be Universities Regulations, 2019 to make them in tune with the broader policies of higher education as contained in the NEP, 2020,” UGC chairperson M Jagadesh Kumar said, adding that these regulations were notified to regulate, in an orderly manner, the process of declaration of institutions of academic excellence as deemed to be universities and to maintain the quality of higher education imparted by these institutions.
The University Grants Commission (UGC) on Friday made the draft public and invited comments on it. The salient features of these modified regulations include fixing fee transparently keeping in view non-profiteering/ non-commercial aspects, may provide fee concession/ scholarships or may allocate some seats to meritorious students belonging to socially and economically deprived groups of the society and “shall implement the reservation policy in admissions/ recruitment, in accordance with the Constitution of India and the Act of Parliament in force.” These universities are also allowed to offer online/distance courses in accordance with the UGC regulations notified on the subject.
The new regulations also stated that the UGC may recommend withdrawal of status for failing to rectify deficiencies such as deemed to be universities with NAAC less than ‘A’ grade or ranked more than 100 in current NIRF ranking (Universities category) after being monitored on the academic parameters by UGC expert committee.
For prospective deemed to be university, the regulations also mandated that “in the case of institutions not funded by the government, a corpus fund of Rs 25 crore or as decided by the commission from time to time, shall be created and maintained in the name of the institution.”