The Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry has zeroed in on five deemed universities that have inadequate infrastructure but were still approved for the status by the University Grants Commission (UGC).
There are 127 deemed universities in India, of which the majority got the status in the last five years.
HRD Minister Kapil Sibal told Rajya Sabha on Tuesday that the ministry has found out that some of the institutions that applied for deemed university status had adequate infrastructure to get the status.
Although functionally, deemed and other universities are almost same, institutions get deemed status under the UGC Act while others are governed through their independent laws.
“So far, in five universities, there are glaring short-comings,” a government official who was not willing to be quoted said.
The deficiencies include not enough faculty, as prescribed in the UGC guidelines, and inadequate infrastructure for quality teaching. However, the ministry is not willing to give the names of the universities till its review is complete.
Sibal has already said that students in deemed universities whose status is withdrawn will not be affected. They will be enrolled as students of the universities to which the deemed universities were earlier affiliated to before getting the special status.
Before taking action, the ministry will wait for a report on the review of all deemed universities from the UGC, likely to be submit by August 28.
The ministry has prescribed a seven-stage process to review the universities, including inspection of campuses by a team of experts.
A senior UGC official, who was not willing to be quoted, said the inspections teams have been constituted and many of them have initiated the review.