THE UNIVERSITY Grants Commission (UGC) has amended its regulations, allowing Institutions of Eminence (IoEs) to set up campuses abroad after receiving no objection certificates from the Ministry of External Affairs and Ministry of Home Affairs. The move is in line with the government’s new National Education Policy, which says that high performing universities should be encouraged to set up campuses abroad.
The amendments also permit the IOEs to start new off campus centres, with a maximum of three in five years and not more than one in an academic year.
There are 18 Institutions of Eminence, including IIT-Delhi, IIT-Kharagpur, IIT-Madras and IIT-Bombay. “Institutions of Eminence Deemed to be Universities shall be allowed to start new off-shore campuses with the prior approval of the Ministry after receiving No Objection Certificate from Ministry of External Affairs and Ministry of Home Affairs,” say the amendments to the UGC (Institutions of Eminence Deemed to be Universities) Regulations, 2017.
“The Institutions of Eminence Deemed to be Universities shall ensure that the norms and standards of the off shore campus shall be the same as that maintained on the main campus for similar courses, and the off-shore campus shall also follow similar admission criteria, curriculum, examination system and evaluation system. All the information about off-shore campus shall be disclosed on the website of the Institution of Eminence Deemed to be University.”
The functioning of the off shore campuses shall be reviewed by an Empowered Experts Committee “independently and/or along with the IOE”.
“After review of the off shore campus, if the Empowered Experts Committee is not satisfied with the performance of the off shore campus, it may recommend discontinuation of the off shore campus to the Central Government. ln such cases, the interest of the students enrolled at the off-shore campus shall be adequately protected by the Institution of Eminence Deemed to be University,” the amendments state.
The IOEs have also been permitted to start an off campus centre on an interim campus “subject to the condition that the permanent campus shall be ready within a reasonable time period of not exceeding five years.”