The final-year exam fiasco

The University Grants Commission is the top boss governing policies of all universities in India. It oversees about 800 universities encompassing about 40,000 colleges. Of these, 49 are central universities, i.e. run by funds from the central government, 367 are state universities run by state government funding and 123 are deemed universities, i.e. UGC has blessed them with that status, although they are largely run with their own funds. The rest are private universities, established under laws passed by respective state legislatures. Until 1976, education was in the States’ List as per the Constitution of India. So all policies were governed by state governments. Due to an amendment passed during the Emergency, education was shifted to the Concurrent List, which meant that the central government could now legislate policies that would be binding on all.

Of course, the UGC has existed since 1956, with a mandate to maintain standard of higher education in the country. It provides grants and funds, and also regulation to maintain standards. Its decisions are binding on all universities of all states and Union Territories.

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