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New norms for release of funds to universities

Varsities' executive councils to now approve release of funds, instead of a UGC inspection team.

delhi Updated: Jan 02, 2012 00:50 IST
Chetan Chauhan
Chetan Chauhan
Hindustan Times

Getting funds for Indian universities without getting clearance from the institution’s executive council and mandatory accreditation would become difficult from the next financial year.

India’s higher education regulator, the University Grants Commission, has altered the funding scheme for universities from April 2012, which is also the mean commencement of the 12th five-year plan.

Instead of mandatory inspections, which often lead to delay in release of funds, the UGC will decide allocations for the entire plan period as soon as it receives the proposal cleared by the university’s highest decision-making body, the executive council.

For instance, if the Physics department of the Delhi University wants money to upgrade its laboratory in the 12th plan, it will submit a proposal to the university. The university will then get it cleared first from the board of studies, then academic council, followed by finance committee and finally, the executive council. Once that is done, the UGC will allocate funds to the Physics department as per its total money allocation for the 12th plan. No one from the UGC will visit the department to evaluate the proposal.

“Discontinuation of sending expert committee to assess financial requirements will help the universities prepare perspective plans in a more democratic manner,” UGC chairperson Ved Prakash said.

As per the existing practice of more than four decades, the university used to submit a finance proposal to the UGC, which then deputed a team of experts to conduct an inspection. Depending on the remarks of the inspection report, the decision on the release of money was taken.

In cases of adverse reports the UGC used to get the inspection conducted again, resulting in delay in release of funds. There were also allegations of corruption in the entire system.

The UGC, as per the decision last week, stipulated new norms to monitor of utilisation of the money given through self disclosures and participation of students and faculty.

Another related decision with disbursement of funds was mandatory accreditation. No funds will be released without accreditation from a recognised agency such as National Assessment and Accreditation Council. “Accreditation has been made must,” Prakash said.

First Published: Jan 02, 2012 00:49 IST