An official from HRD ministry said the proposed Higher Education Commission of India (HECI), which is set to replace the UGC, will also take over the All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE) and a bill in this regard will be placed before the Cabinet next month.
Last year, the Ministry of Human Resource Development (HRD) had announced its decision to replace the University Grants Commission (UGC) by repealing the UGC Act, 1951. The HRD ministry had put the draft bill in the public domain and feedback and suggestions were sought from stakeholders.
“The Higher Education Commission of India will be a single regulator and replace UGC and AICTE. The bill has been prepared after elaborate consultation with states. It will be taken to the Cabinet in October,” a senior HRD Ministry official said. “The HECI will be created by repealing the UGC Act, 1951 and AICTE Act, 1987,” the official also said.
Union HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank” had informed Parliament in July that the HECI will promote the quality of academic instruction, maintenance of academic standards and encourage autonomy of good performing educational institutions for free pursuit of knowledge, innovation, skills, and entrepreneurship.
“The aim is to be inclusive and offer opportunities to all, and also provide for the comprehensive growth of higher education and research in a competitive global environment,” he had said.
While the UGC is the regulator for universities across the country, AICTE acts as a regulator for engineering, pharmacy, management, and other technical education colleges. The earlier draft bill had proposed HECI to control academic matters while an advisory board under the HRD minister would have been in charge of issuing monetary grants to universities.