NEW DELHI: The Union Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry is constituting a Search Committee for appointing the new chairman of the University Grants Commission (UGC), the regulator for higher educational institutions and universities.
The Search Committee would be tasked to identify 10 odd names, mostly educationists and preferably someone having an experience as an administrator for higher educational institutions, top government sources told Express.
The Committee will comprise of eminent educationists and will also have representation from the government.
Sources said that the government is unhappy with the performance of the UGC and is keen on appointing the new UGC chairman, soon after the incumbent UGC chairman, Ved Prakash completes his tenure on April 23, 2017.
Ved Prakash was appointed on January 18, 2013, as UGC chairman with a condition that his tenure would be for five years or 65 years, whichever is earlier. He, however, retired as a UGC staffer at 62, but since he has not yet reached 65, he is continuing to head the UGC. As per UGC rules, Prakash would continue at his office till April 3, 2017.
Sources said that the government is eagerly waiting for the change of guards at the UGC, as the role of the apex educational regulatory body is key to push for early release of the new education policy, that the Narendra Modi government wants to come up by next year.
The UGC as a regulator for higher educational institutions and universities allocates funds from the centre’s budget, provides new grants in the five-year plans, approves courses and makes rules and regulations for university employees and students.
As of date, India has 759 universities including 239 private, 47 central universities, 350 state-run universities and 123 deemed-to-be universities.
For private universities, the UGC approves courses but does not have direct control of its institutes, while for central universities, the UGC funds and approves its courses.
Similarly, many of the state-run universities get central assistance through the UGC, for which the Commission also sets rules and approves courses and the same is the case for deemed-to-be universities, which is directly controlled by the UGC. There are many other technical institutes like IITs and IIMs which are not governed by the UGC.