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Focus: GS-II Governance

Why in news?

HRD Ministry sends guidelines to NTA, UGC and AICTE as the Centre wants universities to take to safeguard students taking examinations physically.

Details of Measures

  1. Two-meters space between examination desks;
  2. Disinfection of walls, floors and doors;
  3. Thermometers and sanitisers at all entry and exit points;
  4. Students having symptoms such as fever, cough and cold should “either be made to sit in a separate room or given a chance to appear on another day”;
  5. Staff conducting exams must self-certify their health status and submit to temperature screening.;
  6. Frequently touched surfaces like doors at all examination centres to be sprayed with disinfectant;
  7. All students must wear face masks and clean their hands;
  8. Staff must wear masks and gloves.

-are some of the major measures notified.

However, many students are still apprehensive about health risks.

Recently in news: Student bodies protest against UGC guidelines mandating exams.

University Grants Commission along with Ministry of Human Resource Development had released Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for conducting the final year or end-semester examination.

The SOP said All states should conduct exams for final year students.

University Grants Commission (UGC)

  • The University Grants Commission of India (UGC India) is a Statutory Body set up by the Government of India in accordance to the UGC Act 1956.
  • UGC is charged with coordination, determination and maintenance of standards of higher education.
  • UGC is set up under the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD).
  • It provides recognition to universities in India, and disbursements of funds to such recognized universities and colleges.
  • UGC is modelled after University Grants Committee of UK which was an advisory committee of the British government.

Accreditation for higher learning over Universities under the aegis of University Grants Commission is overseen by other autonomous statutory institutions such as:

  1. All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE)
  2. Distance Education Council (DEC)
  3. Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR)
  4. Bar Council of India (BCI)
  5. National Council for Teacher Education (NCTE), etc.

Future of UGC

  • In 2018, the Ministry of Human Resource Development announced its plans to repeal the UGC Act, 1956.
  • The bill also stipulates the formation of a new body, the Higher Education Commission of India (HECI).

-Source: The Hindu

July 2024