The proposal by the Footwear Design and Development Institute (FDDI), requesting the status of a deemed university, has been forwarded to the University Grants Commission (UGC) for consideration, said sources.
The institute, which has eight branches all over India, has been embroiled in controversy ever since its MoU with Mewar University was declared invalid by the UGC last year. The move left over 3,000 students in a lurch.
In the last month, students have held protests and demonstrations at different places in the capital to draw attention to their issue, and to “create some kind of pressure on the management and government to find a solution quickly”.
In the latest development, FDDI prepared a proposal to give the institute the status of a deemed university. This was forwarded by the Ministry of Commerce, under whose ambit the institute falls, to the Human Resource Development ministry.
Sources in the HRD ministry told PTI, “The Noida-based FDDI has applied for deemed university status. The proposal has been forwarded to the UGC for advice.” Although granting deemed university status usually takes a few months, the sources added that it could be expedited in this case.
The Delhi High Court had issued an order directing the same on May 5, which stated, “UGC is directed to take a decision with regard to the grant of deemed university status as expeditiously as possible, preferably within a period of one month from the receipt of the proposal.”
Students currently enrolled in the institute, however, continue to be worried because of talk that the “deemed university status does not apply in retrospective”.
Sandeep Bhatia, Deputy General Manager of the training department at the Noida branch of FDDI, however, dismissed such talk as rumours. “There is a clause that allows us to include them in the plan… We are working on it,” he said.