NEW DELHI: In a first step to mend fences with the Parliamentary Standing Committee, Human Resource Development Minister Kapil Sibal on Monday decided to implement its suggestion for setting up a Grievance Redressal Mechanism in higher educational institutions. The Centre was forced to defer the Educational Tribunal Bill in the Rajya Sabha in 2011 and many crucial education reform Bills were pending in Parliament following opposition from members since the government rejected several recommendations of the parliamentary panel headed by Oscar Fernandes.
The committee, while examining the Bill to prohibit and punish unfair practices, had recommended that pro-active steps be taken to constitute Grievance Redressal Mechanism in higher educational institutions. Accepting the recommendation, Sibal has decided to put in place the mechanism through an executive order. All Central Educational Institutions, institutions deemed to be universities, technical and management institutions under AICTE and teacher education institutions under NCTE will have to establish a Grievance Redressal Mechanism for students and applicants for admission before the commencement of the admission this academic year.
Sibal said that every institution would be required to constitute an Ombudsman, a person with judicial or legal experience to be appointed from a panel suggested by the affiliating university for technical and management institutions, by the Central Government for deemed universities and by the regulator for non-degree granting institutions.
The Ombudsman will have the jurisdiction to hear grievances concerning denial of admission, non-observance of declared merit in admission, non-observance of applicable regulations for reservation, withholding of documents and non refund of fees in case of withdrawal of admission, discrimination and other such matters concerning students in pursuit of studies in the institution. The Ombudsman will deliver order within one month.
In case of matters concerning SCs, STs, OBCs and minorities, the Ombudsman can co-opt a person of eminence from the area coming from the weaker section to assist in arriving at a decision.