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ABVP questions move to replace UGC with HECI

The ABVP has now gone on to term the Centre’s move to repeal UGC without waiting for the National Education Policy as “premature and unwarranted”.

ET Bureau|
Jul 17, 2018, 07.35 AM IST
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ABVP’s position is bound to affect the governmental plans to take the HECI Bill to Parliament in the upcoming Monsoon Session.
Opposition from various political parties apart, the BJP-led Central government is now facing with criticism from within — over its ambitious plans to replace the University Grants Commission with the Higher Education Commission of India (HECI).

RSS-affiliated student wing Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) has struck a discordant note expressing “serious concerns” over the HECI plan, red-flagging a number of deficiencies in the draft legislation and criticising the hurry with which the government is moving. In fact, several of its criticisms seem to echo that of the Opposition as well as the Congress’ student wing NSUI.

The ABVP has now gone on to term the Centre’s move to repeal UGC without waiting for the National Education Policy as “premature and unwarranted”.

Office-bearers of the student wing have also sought time to meet HRD minister Prakash Javadekar to underline their concerns over HECI. ABVP, which has so far maintained silence on the issue, is learnt to have taken a contrarian position against the government’s line after several rounds of consultations in various cities and campuses with students and academicians.

Ashish Chauhan, national general secretary of the ABVP, told ET that their position on HECI was well thought out and strongly informed with feedback from the academic community.

ABVP’s position is bound to affect the governmental plans to take the HECI Bill to Parliament in the upcoming Monsoon Session.

Opposition parties have already expressed reservations on the HECI with the Congress and CPI-M slamming it. Tamil Nadu chief minister has also shot off a strongly worded letter to Javadekar against HECI.

ABVP’S ARGUMENT

“Since the National Education Policy is underway, the prerogative of HECI is a subject matter of NEP under the section ‘Governance and Regulation of Education’, as stated in the mandate of the committee on NEP,” Chauhan said in a statement.

While expressing support for education reforms, the ABVP has criticised the HRD ministry for not giving adequate time for discussion on the Bill and has pitched for an overarching regulatory body with clear coordination mechanism with other regulators such as the MCI and the AICTE.
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