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AICTE guidelines: Hearing posted to Mar 15

Written by: Staff

Chennai, Mar 1 (UNI) Madras High Court today posted to March 15 the final hearing on the petitions from five deemed universities challenging Sections 10 (o) and 11 of the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) Act relating to guidelines for admission and inspection of universities.

Justice E Dharma Rao posted to March 15 the final hearing of petitions filed by Vinayaga Mission in Salem, SRM, Sathyabama, Dr M G R and Bharathi Deemed Universities and directed the University Grants Commission (UGC) to file its counter in the meantime.

The petitioners contended being deemed universities (DU) which were wholly unaided, they were entitled to evolve their own admission procedure. Being governed exclusively by the UGC Act there was no scope for any other authority, including the AICTE, to impose any condition or interfere with the administration.

While so, the AICTE in its order dated December 8, 2003 and October 17, 2005 called for certain information including courses conducted and fees charged. It also proposed inspection of the institutions. Aggrieved, they moved the High Court which granted an interim injunction on January 21, 2006.

Seeking to vacate the stay, the AICTE filed its counter affidavit pointing out the First Bench of the court had already dismissed a batch of petitions challenging the communication after holding that the AICTE has called for certain details and the petitioners were not shown any prejudice by the communication.

It did not affect the petitioners right in any manner. The AICTE was empowered to call for certain information under Section 10 and 11 of the Act, the AICTE added.

The AICTE said it was not open to petitioners to challenge the communication by altering the prayer. It was wrong to contend the DU was exclusively governed by the provisions of UGC Act.

Since the petitioners were adhering to the standard of technical education laid down by the AICTE, it had the power to verify them.

A reading of the AICTE Act would make it abundantly clear that it had the right to inspect the DUs for ascertaining certain details and make recommendations after inspection.

It was also within the power of AICTE to provide the guidelines for admission of students, evolve suitable performance appraisal system and allocate funds to the universities.

In technical education, the AICTE Act being a Special enactment and there being specific provisions incorporated regarding DUs, the contention of the petitioners could not be sustained in law.

Both the UGC and AICTE fell under the Ministry of Human Resource Development, the AICTE pointed out.


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