While the state government is stressing on universities getting its affiliated colleges accredited by national bodies, the accreditation of Mumbai University itself has expired three years ago.
The National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC), set up by the University Grants Commission, is a body that grades an educational institution based on faculty, infrastructure and other parameters. A NAAC accreditation increases the prestige of an institution and is now being prescribed as the standard in institutions across India.
In a recent amendment to qualifications for members of university administrative bodies, the state has said that only colleges and faculty from accredited colleges will be allowed to be part of these bodies. A NAAC accreditation is valid for five years.
Mumbai University’s five star accreditation, the highest grade, expired in 2007, after which an extension of one year is given to allow time for reapplication.
V.N Magare, head of the Board of College and University Development, which is in charge of coordinating the NAAC accreditation, said: “There is a committee to look into the accreditation process.”
The committee, said university sources, is an informal set up of a few officials. “It is an informal committee set up to help collate data for the detailed report that needs to be sent to the council to apply again for accreditation,” said the university source.
Several colleges affiliated to the university are already reapplying for accreditation for the third time. “The NAAC has even changed its grading system to A, B and C and we have been accredited with stars. This is how dated the university is,” said another university official. “There have been committees set up but the effort shave yielded nothing and now the whole university is in limbo because there is no official head.”