Level playing field: UGC must give Indian universities the same freedoms it’s planning to give foreign universities

Source: The post is based on an article Level playing field: UGC must give Indian universities the same freedoms it’s planning to give foreign universities published in The Times of India on 1st September 2022.

Syllabus: GS 2 – Issues linked with education

Relevance: Higher education reforms

Context: This article discusses about the problems faced by Indian Universities compared to foreign universities.

UGC and the education ministry are reportedly finalising regulations for foreign universities’ India campuses.

The plan is to offer “near full freedom” on determining academic course structure and curriculum, faculty hiring and salaries, and even fees.

Why should Indian universities in India not enjoy these freedoms?

Foreign universities are concerned with over-regulation.

However, Indian universities have to actually function under the restrictive regime.

If UGC wants to reform the system it must apply the changes to all players – domestic and foreign.

What are the problems associated with Indian Universities?

Indian universities, both public and private, have to negotiate their way through a bulk of rules and regulations, framed by UGC, AICTE, NMC, BCI, state governments.

These rules apply for starting new courses, sanctioning student intake, and various academic and administrative operations.

No Western country or even China makes its education institutions subject to so many rules and regulations.

The parliamentary standing committee on education has found UGC and other regulators to be overregulating in their approach.

There’s a growing demand-supply gap in quality higher education.

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