NEW DELHI: Last week, the Delhi University submitted its proposal to the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) to get the letter of intent needed for getting the tag of “Institution of Eminence” (IoE) and a copy of the same proposal and Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was also sent to the Delhi University’s Executive Council Members for their pursuance.

Though DU’s Executive Council members have claimed that proper discussion was not held before sending this proposal to the MHRD, many teachers have said that the “Eminence” status would open the doors to new opportunities for the DU.

According to UGC officials, the DU was among other public institutions which had got recommendation from the University Grants Commissions (UGC) in 2019 to get a tag of “Institution of Eminence”. After considering the reports of the Empowered Expert Committee (EEC) appointed by the Central government under the Chairmanship of N. Gopalaswami, the UGC, in its meeting held on 2 August 2019, recommended the names of 15 public institutions and 15 pPrivate institutions for giving them status of “Institutions of Eminence”.

As per the UGC, a set of three public institutions, including, IIT Bombay, IIT Delhi and IISC Bangalore (Deemed University) were already granted the IoE tag last year, while five universities, including IIT Madras, IIT Kharagpur, Delhi University (Central University), University of Hyderabad, Hyderabad (Central University), Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi (Central University), were recommended by the UGC for getting a grant of the IoE tag. Another set of two universities, including Jadavpur University, Kolkata, (State University), Anna University, Chennai (State University), were directed to hold a consultation with the respective state governments to get a recommendation.

The public institutions that failed to receive a recommendation for getting IoE tag include  Savitribai Phule Pune University, Pune (State University), AMU, Aligarh (Central University, Tezpur University (Central University), Panjab University, Chandigarh (State/Central University), Andhra University, Visakhapatnam  (State University).

On the other hand, in the  private institution category, three universities including, BITS Pilani, Rajasthan, Manipal Academy of Higher Education and the Jio Institute (Reliance Foundation, Maharashtra), have already been grated the IoE tag and a letter of intent has also been given to these institutions. The UGC had recommended for  giving the IoE tag to Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, Bangalore, VIT Vellore, Tamil Nadu, Jamia Hamdard, New Delhi, Kalinga Institute of Industrial Technology, Bhubaneswar, O.P Jindal University, Haryana, Shiv Nadar University, Uttar Pradesh and the Bharti (Satya Bharti Foundation), Delhi (Greenfield-yet to be established).

The “Institutions of Eminence” initiative was launched in 2016 to implement a commitment of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led Central government to empower higher educational institutions and to help them become world-class teaching and research institutions. As per the provisions of the IoE, the MHRD can grant “Institution of Eminence” tag to 10 public and 10 private institutions and for better and fair competition, the UGC had recommended the names of 15 institutions from each category and after assessing the proposal, the MHRD’s expert committee will take a decision to select 10 public and 10 private institutions for giving the IoE tag.

An “institution with Eminence” tag will be able to get Rs 1,000 crore additional funds by the ministry and the institution can also exercise more autonomy.

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