REFERRING TO THE investigation published last week in The Indian Express on fake research paper shops in India, the Government Monday said that it has asked all universities to review by August 30 the list of academic journals that are to be recognised by the UGC.
“We will end this menace of predatory journals,” Union HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar said during Question Hour in Lok Sabha.
Replying to a supplementary question from Prabhas Kumar Singh of BJD, Javadekar said: “What has been published in a very reputed newspaper is really a story that is not a good story. In one room, there are 87 journals being published, and stories like that. We have taken note of that and we are asking universities to review their recommendations about journals to be recognised by the UGC for promotion and accreditation. They will review by August 30 and give a final recommendation.”
Responding to another supplementary question raised by Congress MP Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, Javadekar said: “We are rectifying these things… We do not want any predatory journals to exist.”
According to Javadekar, a UGC Standing Committee has, after due verification, removed over 4,000 sub-standard journals. He said the committee has recognised 26,000 journals as on May 2, 2018.
Explained: How the pay-and-publish business works
In a series of investigative reports published across three days starting July 19, The Indian Express reported on how India has emerged as one of the biggest markets for a business in which over 300 publishers manage what are called “predatory journals” that claim to be international and publish papers for a “charge” ranging from $30-$1,800 per piece.
The investigation found that the range of names linked to articles and conferences organised by publishers of such journals includes Vice-Chancellors, AIIMS directors and IIT professors.
It also revealed that Hyderabad has become the hub of predatory publishing in India with companies based in the city bringing out over 1,500 active journals on subjects ranging from medicine to management.