The University Grants Commission (UGC) is learnt to have issued a directive to Delhi University (DU) to withdraw with immediate effect the Four-Year Undergraduate Programme (FYUP), the university’s controversial, one-year-old attempt at reforming its academic programme.
The move comes within days of UGC asking for a “review” of the FYUP, and just over a month after the NDA took power at the Centre. The BJP manifesto had promised to scrap FYUP, and ABVP, the party’s student wing, has been protesting against the programme.
Top sources told The Indian Express that UGC had told DU on Friday that FYUP violated the National Policy on Education that advocates a 10+2+3 format.
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It had also been conveyed to the DU administration that it had failed to get the Visitor’s approval for its amended ordinance enabling the FYUP, and also failed to respond to the Human Resource Development Ministry’s queries on the same in 2013, the sources said. The President of India is the Visitor to all central universities.
At a meeting of the UGC in Delhi on June 13, it was argued that the change had not been effected through an amendment to the university’s Act, and was, therefore, illegal. The meeting decided to ask DU to review FYUP.
The UGC decision is said to have the support of HRD Minister Smriti Irani, who has maintained that the interests of students would be protected.
The scrapping of FYUP is a major setback to DU Vice-Chancellor Prof Dinesh Singh, who had pushed the new academic programme through in the face of strong resistance from the university’s teaching community.
Singh had positioned FYUP as the switch to a modern higher education format that was in tune with global higher education formats, and facilitated greater reform through student mobility, inter-varsity credit transfers and a semester system.