COIMBATORE: Deemed universities can no longer offer technical education programmes without the prior approval of the All India Council for Technical Education, (AICTE). The apex regulatory body for technical education has mandated deemed universities to get prior approval of the council for running technical-education programmes, which they do not required to till now.
The decision was taken following the recent order by Supreme Court on November 3, where the apex court directed that the AICTE Regulation of 1994, which mandates prior approval of the council to run technical education programmes in the country, do apply to the Deemed universities.
“Institutions Deemed to be University/ Private University seeking approval for the first time from AICTE shall submit an application as a new technical institution for all their existing technical programme(s) and course(s). Deemed to be University having multiple campuses should apply separately for each campus for approval,” says the AICTE Approval Process Handbook 2018-19, which was released on Friday. There are a total of 123 deemed universities across the country, out of which 28 are in Tamil Nadu. There are 282 private universities that are currently functioning in various States.
“All existing deemed universities offering technical education programmes should apply to AICTE, even for existing courses. We will conduct inspection and then grant approval. Few deemed universities are already getting AICTE’s approval for running technical education programmes,” said an AICTE official.
Welcoming the AICTE’s decision, TD Eswaramoorthy, secretary of All India Federation of Self Financing Technical Institutions said, “Presently there is no control on deemed universities either from UGC, AICTE, State or Central government.”
“Even governments do not even know how many students are being admitted in engineering programmes by this Deemed to be Universities and how many of them are passed. They do not have any restriction on number of students being admitted in a particular course or year. It is a welcome move,” he added. However, deemed universities have a different view.
“This new approval process for deeemed universities is in accordance with the recent Supreme Court order, which clearly categorises deemed universities into two: one that offer engineering programmes before conferment of deemed status, and the other that have started after conferment,” said a dean from a deemed university, who did not wish to be named.
“AICTE approval is hence necessary by interpretation for the second category, as per the intent of the court. Also, regulatory power cannot exercise provisions that are not in the parent AICTE Act.”