With an aim of eliminating scope of fake certification, government has prepared a bill which envisages creation of a database of academic degrees and provides for Rs 10 crore penalty or 10-year jail term in case of wrong endorsement by officials of the databank.
According to the draft National Academic Depository (NAD) Act 2010, data of all academic certificates issued by universities and central and state school boards will be maintained in electronic form.
The National Academic Depository, to be set up for the purpose, will adopt adequate system of safeguards for storage, access and retrieval of records while ensuring its confidentiality, fidelity and authenticity.
However, if there is any offence with regard to wrong certification by the agency, the NAD's promoter, director, secretary or other officer shall be liable to be punished with imprisonment up to 10 years or fine up to Rs 10 crore or both, the draft bill says.
The idea is to checked forged certificate and have foolproof verification process for the employers.
Under this initiative, the school boards, universities and certificate issuing institutions can have direct linkages to the depository. The certificates could be stored in a DMAT format.
Any person, company or institution requiring a copy of an academic award shall have the facility of online access or may obtain physical copy of the authenticated academic award from the NAD.
The draft law says that if any academic institution fails to discharge its duty or contravenes the provisions of the act will be liable for penalty up to Rs five lakh.
For offences like hacking into the national database, the offenders will be punishable under the provisions of the IT Act, 2000.