The draft University Grants Commission (Setting up and Operation of Campuses of Foreign Higher Educational Institutions in India) Regulations will be adopted in the first week of May, UGC Chairman M. Jagdesh Kumar told The Hindu. Prof. Kumar said the draft received responses from several foreign universities and embassies and the UGC was in the final stage of consolidating the suggestions. He added that the UGC would consult the Reserve Bank of India and would take legal opinion before the announcement of the guidelines.
Prof. Kumar said most of the suggestions were from universities based in Europe and North America. “Several embassies have also contacted us with their queries and suggestions,” he said. The UGC had put up the draft guidelines in its website in January this year. It said the regulations were in line with the recommendations of the National Education Policy (NEP), 2020, for the internationalisation of the higher education system in India. The draft said the move was to foster academic collaboration between Indian Higher Educational Institutions (HEIs) and foreign HEIs.
Prof. Kumar said the setting up of foreign universities in India would be a “win-win situation” for he country. “It will help students to develop collaborative research or academic activities with foreign students. There are a number of Indian academics in foreign universities. They can come to India to teach in their own universities. This will improve the overall standard of higher education in the country,” Prof. Kumar added. He said once the suggestions were incorporated, the UGC would contact the embassies and foreign universities with the amended draft, before the final announcement. “This is also to bring an awareness about the scope of setting up foreign universities in India,” he said.
The NEP had said that top universities in the world would be facilitated to operate in India and for this “a legislative framework facilitating such entry will be put in place, and such universities will be given special dispensation regarding regulatory, governance, and content norms on par with other autonomous institutions of India.” “A regulatory framework allowing the entry of higher-ranked foreign universities, as envisaged in NEP, 2020, will provide an international dimension to higher education, enable Indian students to obtain foreign qualifications at affordable cost, and make India an attractive global study destination. These regulations aim to facilitate the entry of foreign higher educational institutions into India,” the draft said.
The draft added that no Foreign HEIs shall set up campuses in India without the approval of the UGC. Foreign universities, who had secured a position within the top 500 of overall / subject-wise global rankings, would be allowed to set up campuses in the country, according to the draft.