This refers to the report that 44 institutions across the country will lose their deemed university status as they do not meet the requisite standards (Jan. 19). It is heartening to note that those in power have opened their eyes to the gross misuse of authority to grant the deemed university status. The Supreme Court should direct the government to lay down stringent guidelines for according such status, and probe the indiscriminate approvals granted to the institutions which are set to lose the status.
That the Supreme Court had to intervene before the Centre accepted that 44 deemed universities did not meet the standards reflects badly on the authorities concerned and raises the question how the status was granted in the first place.
The lofty ideals of the UGC — of decentralising academic and research activities — in conferring the deemed university status stand defeated with the recommendation of the P.N. Tandon Committee to strip 44 institutions of the status. More disappointing is the knowledge that a majority of these institutions deal with sciences such as medicine, dentistry and physiotherapy.