No policy on foreign varsities: Panel
The parliamentary panel has asked the Govt to look into the antecedents and credentials of the foreign univs and institutions.india Updated: May 28, 2006 12:55 IST
A parliamentary committee has expressed concern over the absence of a definite policy for regulating the entry and operations of over 100 foreign universities and institutions in India.
In its report submitted to Parliament last week, the standing committee on human resource development said it was "astonished" to note that over 100 foreign institutions were offering different courses in the country without any regulation on their operations, quality of education and management.
It has asked the government to appoint a committee to look into the antecedents and credentials of the foreign universities and institutions and said strict action could be taken if any were found to be fake or fictitious in nature.
"Due publicity should be given against them," said the standing committee headed by Janardan Dwivedi of the Congress party.
The committee pointed out that the All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE) - the body that regulates the technical education institutions in the country - regulates only those foreign universities that enter a collaborative arrangement with Indian universities for technical educations.
"The law is silent on foreign universities/institutions offering non-technical education including medicine, law, arts, sciences and social sciences etc," the report said.
"The committee feels that this gap needs to be filled at the earliest. It is incumbent upon the government and related regulatory bodies like the UGC (University Grants Commission) or the MCI (Medical Council of India) to come out with a definite policy or legislation for regulating the entry and operation of foreign universities and institutions as soon as possible," the report said.
The parliamentarians said only good institutions accredited in their countries should be allowed to operate in India and the fee charged by them also needs to be regulated.
The committee expressed strong concern about the country's preparedness towards maximising the fruits of liberalisation in the education sector. "It is perturbed to note that there is still no authentic database on operations of foreign education institutions in the country."
The 32-member parliamentary committee warned the government to be cautious, as the possibility of a prestigious university adopting "double standards in quality" could not be ruled out.
The report went on to say that the learning they provide at their home countries is of high standard, while the distance learning in developing countries by them is sub standard," the report said.