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Show cased by this government as part of its reform agenda, the Foreign Education Providers Bill now has little or no hope of being passed by Parliament. But the Union Human Resource Development ministry has no plans of giving up. Keen to forge collaborations between Indian and foreign varsities with or without legislation, the ministry has asked the University Grants Commission (UGC) to formulate regulations for the same.
Sources said that a UGC committee is being set up to devise these regulations on the lines of the twinning formula of the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE). The AICTE has drawn up rules for collaboration and partnerships between Indian and foreign institutes in the field of technical education and students enrolled for these courses can complete semesters in partner institutes. With this ‘twinning’ arrangement working fine, the ministry is of the opinion that a similar format be followed for varsities as well. “Most of the provisions of the Bill can be affected through UGC regulations. Only a foreign university cannot come to India and set up a standalone full-fledged campus on its own. It can, however, do so in collaboration with an Indian institute. Students enrolled will be able to complete one semester in the Indian institute and complete the rest in the foreign institute fulfilling the purpose of the Bill. This arrangement will effectively at least allow a foothold to foreign educational institutes in India,” an official said. The issues that UGC will have to find a way around are those of degree awarding and fee regulations. It is expected that in three-four months the regulations can be readied and approved by the UGC, paving the way for entry of foreign partners in India’s university system.
Courtesy: The Indian Express
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