NEW DELHI: The Union Human Resources Development ministry on Monday clarified that a final decision on the proposed shift of grant giving function to the ministry from the new body that will replace the University Grants Commission is yet to be taken.
"..no such final decision has yet been taken to shift the grant function to the Ministry even though the recommendation about separating the Regulator and grant-giving entity has been made by many an expert committee in the past, and is rooted in sound principles of governance," the government said in a statement.
Last week, the Centre had placed in the public domain a draft Bill for a Higher Education Commission of India - aimed at replacing the UGC - for eliciting suggestions from educationists.
The draft HECI (Repeal of UGC Act) Act, 2018, takes away funding powers from the proposed regulator and gives it powers to ensure academic quality and even close down bogus institutions.
The ministry on Monday said that the Government is keen to ensure that the grant-giving process shall be purely merit-based, online, objective system that assures both transparency and efficiency with least human interface.
"Such IT systems are already operating in managing much bigger funding schemes like Impacting Research Innovation and Technology (IMPRINT) and Rashtriya Uchchtar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA) flawlessly, and therefore can be put in place to manage the UGC schemes easily," it also added.
The HRD ministry also said that if there is a successor system to the current grant-giving system of UGC, the same will be operated in the most unbiased and impartial manner.
"The apprehensions in this regard are purely misplaced," read the statement.