COIMBATORE: From now on, colleges can be established on just 1.5 acres of land in mega cities in the country.
The University Grants Commission (UGC) has amended the UGC (Affiliation of Colleges by Universities) Regulations 2009 to give effect to this decision for grant of temporary/permanent affiliation to institutions. The 2009 regulations were silent on the land requirement for establishing colleges in mega cities and instead detailed land requirement norms only in respect of institutions proposed to be started in metropolitan and other cities.
A new clause has been introduced in the UGC (Affiliation of Colleges by Universities-First Amendment) Regulations 2012, which permits colleges to be set up on land measuring a minimum of 1.5 acres if it is located in mega cities. The land requirement for establishing colleges in metropolitan cities (2 acres) and other cities (5 acres) remain unchanged. However, the new clause shall not be applicable to existing colleges that are already affiliated to universities. Incidentally, the UGC has not elaborated what constitutes a mega city.
The apex regulatory body has in the meantime added a new eligibility criterion for granting permanent affiliation for a college.
“As per this newly-introduced clause 5.5, only colleges which have been accredited by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) or any other statutory accreditation agency by the State or Central Government shall be eligible to apply for permanent affiliation,” a source said. As per the guidelines of NAAC only colleges from which at least two batches of students have graduated can apply for accreditation.
Applying for accreditation is presently a voluntary exercise but the Union Human Resource Development Ministry had a couple of years ago drafted a legislation to make it mandatory. The legislation is still pending approval. The amended UGC Regulations reiterate that the academic building in colleges must accommodate all faculties (departments), lecture/seminar rooms, library with a minimum of 15 sqft area per student and 20 sqft per student in each of the laboratories. However, this “sub-clause shall not apply to colleges already affiliated to the universities.” The colleges must also take adequate measures for safety, security and pollution control.