An official letter issued by University Grants Commission (UGC) and Ministry of Human Resource Development (HRD) to all the central universities implementing GFR (General Financial Rules) with an immediate effect has sparked tensions, as it may lead to fee hike. According to GFR, the university must be financially self-reliant. A teacher associated with the University of Delhi pointed that the new GFR will leave no option with university except to increase the fees of students.
UGC and MHRD sent a letter to all the central universities on November 2, 2017. All the central universities have been directed by UGC to submit the fund utilisation certificate in the prescribed format. In the certificate, all the universities must update the funds obtained or received, non-utilised funds and interest earned on non-utilised funds.
Teachers at Delhi University pointed that the letter is just a follow-up of the OM (Office Management) in January 2017, sent to autonomous institutions. The OM gave concurrence to the implementation of revised pay scales, and the financial adviser of the organisation must make sure that the extent of support by the government must be kept the minimum. The government support should not be more than 70% of the additional financial impact. It is in the hands of the university to generate 30% of funds themselves.
If the universities have to generate 30% of funds, they need to hike the fee, which may affect and hurt students from financially weaker sections.
A member associated with Delhi University Teachers’ Union indicated that the government decided for funds cut and is making a push towards privatisation.