HEERA to replace UGC and AICTE
The Modi Government is all set to scrap two higher education regulators, the University Grants Commission (UGC) and All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) and replace them with Higher Education Empowerment Regulation Agency (HEERA), one higher education regulator.
The human resource development (HRD) ministry and the Niti Aayog are working on the new law.
A committee has, among others, Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant and higher education secretary KK Sharma as members.
The main motive behind scrapping of UGC and AICTE by a single regulator is to eliminate all overlaps in the jurisdiction and do away with regulatory provisions that may no longer be relevant.
The idea to replace the multiple regulatory authorities with a single and streamlined one is not new – several committees including the Yashpal Committee and the National Knowledge Commission of the UPA era and the Hari Gautam Committee set up by this government have recommended the same – the reform never happened.
The separation of technical and nontechnical education is outmoded and out of sync with global practices, and that a single regulator will bring in greater synergy among institutions and in framing curricula.
HEERA is aimed to put an end to the inspector raj and harassment that the UGC regime is associated with.
The new body will also be empowered to take strong penal action when necessary.