The University Grants Commission (UGC)
Address: Bahadur Shah Zafar Marg, New Delhi-110002
Website: Official Website of UGC
UGC is the apex body for the promotion of higher education. The Constitution of India makes higher education as much a responsibility of the Centre as of the States. However, the coordination and determination of standards in institutions of higher education and research and of scientific and technical institutions is the exclusive responsibility of the Centre. In terms of this provision in the Constitution, the University Grants Commission (UGC) was established in 1956 by an Act of Parliament (University Grants Commission Act, 1956) as a statutory body for the determination and maintenance of standards of teaching, examination and research in universities.
The UGC has the unique distinction of being the only grant-giving agency in the country which has been vested with two responsibilities: that of providing funds and that of coordination, determination and maintenance of standards in institutions of higher education.
The UGC's mandate includes:
1. Promoting and coordinating university education.
2. Determining and maintaining standards of teaching, examination and research in universities.
3. Framing regulations on minimum standards of education.
4. Monitoring developments in the field of collegiate and university education; disbursing grants to the universities and colleges.
4. Serving as a vital link between the Union and state governments and institutions of higher learning.
5. Advising the Central and State governments on the measures necessary for improvement of university education.
The UGC Act, 1956 states that the general duty of the Commission is “to take, in consultation with the universities or other bodies concerned, all such steps as it may think fit, for the promotion and co-ordination of University education and maintenance of standards of teaching, examination and research in Universities…”.
Grants given by the Central Government through the Commission are meant to develop the academic and research programmes in the universities.
Three Sections of the University grants Commission act deserve mention:
1. Section 22 (1) states that “the right of conferring of granting degrees shall be exercised only by a University established or incorporated by or under Section 3 or an institution specially empowered by an Act of Parliament to confer or grant degrees”.
2. Section 23 of the Act provides that “no institution whether a corporate body or not, other than a university established or incorporated by or under a Central Act, a Provincial Act, or State Act shall be entitled to have the word “University” associated with its name in any manner whatsoever”.
3. Section 24 provides for a fine extending to one thousand rupees for any violation of the provisions of Section 22 and 23.