In his recommendations sent to the HRD Ministry on Monday, March 27, 2017, the Solicitor-General said that the UGC cannot appoint an Empowered Expert Committee to shortlist, monitor and review institutions of eminence.
This information was forwarded to Mahendra Nath Pandey, Minister of State for HRD, as the response to a question raised in Lok Sabha.
The HRD Ministry had also sought the advice of the Law Ministry regarding the formulation of norms for institutions of eminence in India. To come up with a formal set of regulations, the Law Ministry had referred the matter to the Solicitor General of India.
The Minister informed that the Solicitor General has stated that according to the UGC Act 1956, it is not possible for the regulatory body to form an Empowered Expert Committee for the evaluation of the Institutions of Eminence.
However, there were other regulations for which the Solicitor General has given his approval. These include the guidelines and regulations for eminent institutions introduced in the UGD draft as they are compatible with the existing statutory framework.
The approval was also given for framing regulations for a separate class of Deemed Universities to be established namely “Institutions of Eminence Deemed to be Universities”.
The Solicitor General also added that the UGC has the authority to frame such guidelines and regulations to work in line with the concerns expressed by the Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley to bring Indian educational institutions at par with global institutes of repute.