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IIT, IIM to get equal accreditation rights on a par with NAAC

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HRD minister announces policy decision to check national assessment body’s power

In a major step taken by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) and Indian Institute of Management (IIM) across the country have now been granted accreditation authority, on a par with the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC). Union minister of human resource development (MHRD) Prakash Javadekar made the announcement during a programme at the Indira Group of Institutes, held in Wakad on Saturday. While this move is undoubtedly aimed at curbing NAAC’s power, following several complaints of misuse and malpractice, this is also an absolute volte-face by the government, which has had its share of differences with these educational institutes. Said Javadekar, “India has 700 universities, 38,000 educational institutions and 1.5 crore students opting for higher education. Yet, NAAC is the only accreditation authority we have. We have received several complaints of NAAC members misusing this power. Therefore, we have now taken a policy decision to rationalise the accreditation process and allow accreditation authority to government institutions like IIT and IIM.”

He added, “NAAC is currently issuing accreditation to 1,000 institutions in a year, which means they could take 38 years for all of them. We would like to complete the target in the next 10 years. This decision will work as a support system and ensure transparency in the assessment and accreditation process. We have discussed the matter with the heads of the institutes.” Devang Khakhar, director of IIT Bombay, told Mirror, “We don’t have any idea of how this will work yet. But, we certainly appreciate this decision taken by the MHRD. It is still in the initial stages — next week we have a meeting with the HRD minister on this issue. After that, the Centre will frame a final draft on the functioning of the institutions in this matter.”

Dr Arun Nigvekar, founder of NAAC and former chairman of University Grants Commission (UGC) told Mirror, “NAAC’s main function is to give accreditation and assessment to educational institutions and universities after spot inspections. The norms and regulations are designed in keeping with the international norms of UNESCO. In 2010, when I was chairman of UGC, I had submitted a detailed report for allowing assessment and accreditation rights not only to government institutions like IIT and IIM, but also private agencies so that the target could be achieved. Now, with the number of students and institutions and universities increasing every year, NAAC has been unable to meet its target. This is a good decision by the HRD ministry and will certainly lend support to NAAC on a national level.” – Courtesy


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