New Delhi: About ten days after the Supreme Court of India asked Deemed to be Universities to stop using the word "University" in their names, University Grants Commission (UGC) sents letter to all such institutions to abide by the SC order and drop the said word.
In a letter dated November 10, the UGC has asked about 120 Deemed-to-be-Universities to drop the word 'University' from their names.
The letter cited the Supreme Court order dated November 3, 2017 and says that the use of word 'University' by Deemed-to-be universities is in violation of the Section 23 of the UGC Act.
"It has come to our notice that many institutions which are conferred with the status of Deemed to be Universities are using the word "university" which in our view is opposed to the spirit of section 23 of the UGC act. UGC shall take appropriate steps to stop such practice", the SC order said.
The Supreme Court in the same order also restrained institutions providing distance education from enrolling students in technical courses.
The SC Bench comprising Justice UU Lalit set aside an earlier verdict of the Odisha High Court which had allowed technical education via correspondence.
The Supreme Court also cancelled the engineering degrees of students who earned them through distance learning from three deemed universities after 2005.
The bench found that the universities had conducted correspondence courses without proper approval from the authorities concerned.
The apex court in its order hailed a two-year-old decision of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, which had also opposed the system of providing technical education through distance mode.
Two years ago the Punjab and Haryana High Court had ruled out a degree in computer science through a distance education.
In its order, the High Court had said that it won’t be same as the person who is attending the regular college.
After this Supreme Court verdict, hundreds of such institutions which were providing technical education through distance mode are set to be affected.
But, the SC order, taken to ensure education quality, will also provide relief to thousands of students who were confused about enrolling themselves in such educational institutions.
Distance education or distance learning is the education of students who may not always be physically present at a school. Traditionally this usually involved correspondence courses wherein the student corresponded with the school via post, or now through internet via e-mail.