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6 on deemed varsity B-list upgraded

New Delhi, July 25: A government-appointed panel of experts has upgraded six deemed universities found deficient on several counts in a review three years ago but didn’t find much improvement in another six following a fresh assessment.

The upgraded six are now set to join the eight the panel had promoted late last year to the A list — or those deserving of the deemed tag.

The 14 were among the 44 the panel had listed in category B after a 2010 review found them deficient on parameters like academics, governance and research.

The committee of academics P.N. Tandon, G. Mehta, M. Miri and M. Anandakrishnan, which reviewed 126 deemed varsities, had then found only 38 deserving of the deemed tag and put them in category A.

It had found another 44 “unworthy” of the status and put them in category C. These institutions have since challenged the findings in the Supreme Court.

The six institutions the HRD ministry-appointed panel has upgraded following the latest review are Jain Vishwa Bharti Institute, Rajasthan; Swami Vivekananda Yoga Anusandhan Samsthana, Bangalore; Datta Meghe Institute of Health Sciences, Nagpur; Gandhigram Rural Institute, Tamil Nadu; Defence Institute of Advanced Technology, Pune; and ABV Indian Institute of Information Technology and Management Studies, Gwalior.

“The panel reviewed the deemed universities on the same nine parameters (used in the 2010 review) like research output, faculty resources, admission process, innovative teaching and governance. Six deemed universities got more than 30 out of a total of 45 marks and have been promoted,” an HRD ministry official said.

“The other six institutions were found to be still deficient on all these criteria and have been retained in category B.”

Although their deemed tag is still safe, their category is a reflection on what they can offer students.

The panel did not find much evidence of improvement in Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies, Mumbai; Dr DY Patil Vidyapeeth, Pune; Hindustan Institute of Technology and Science, Tamil Nadu; Gokhale Institute of Politics and Economics, Pune; ICFAI Foundation for Higher Education, Hyderabad; and Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswathi Mahavidyalaya, Tamil Nadu.

The HRD ministry official said the committee made adverse comments about Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswathi Mahavidyalaya, saying it found evidence of deterioration.

About Narsee Monjee institute, the panel said the institution’s accreditation had expired. It said the research output of Dr DY Patil Vidyapeeth has not been commensurate with increase in faculty strength. About the other three, the panel, the HRD official said, did not find any significant improvement in their performance.

Professor V.S. Vishnu Potty, vice-chancellor, Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswathi Mahavidyalaya, disagreed with the panel’s findings. “The committee has given zero mark in the criterion of governance despite the university having a democratic governance system. I do not agree that we have deteriorated,” Potty said.

The vice-chancellor of Dr DY Patil Vidyapeeth, P.N. Razdan, did not comment. Ashis Tambe, the public relations officer of Narsee Monjee Institute, has not reacted to the fresh findings. Authorities of the other three institutions couldn’t be reached.

The assessment was the second since last year after the original 2010 review.