UGC sets 2015 deadline for accreditation by Indian Universities
University Grants Commission (UGC) has warned higher educational institutes across the country about getting themselves accredited by 01st June 2015, failing which financial assistance to them would be frozen. The word of caution is directed at hundreds of institutions which are yet to seek accreditation, a step which became mandatory after UGC came out with a gazette notification earlier this year. Scores of universities and colleges depend on UGC funds for their day-to-day functioning, including for paying staffers' salaries. The 2015 deadline was set at a full commission meeting late last month after it emerged that several institutes still had to undergo the accreditation process as mandated under the regulation. So far, of the 650 universities across the country, only 179 have been accredited, along with 5,224 colleges. According to HRD Ministry officials, 133 universities are eligible for accreditation, of which 88 are state universities while seven are central ones. They said 22 deemed universities and 16 private universities are yet to apply for accreditation. As per rules, all higher educational institutions should get accredited after the passing out of two batches of students or completion of six years, whichever was earlier. It was also decided at the said meeting that UGC may propose appropriate amendments to the regulations. Under the present rules, accreditation is valid for five years. It is mandatory for each accredited higher educational institution to apply for re-accreditation six months before expiry of the five-year period. Non-compliance with the rules could lead to withholding of all grants and declaration of such educational institutions as being ineligible for any aid under any of the general or special assistance programmes of UGC.