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The Supreme Court on friday held that the correspondence engineering degree obtained by the students in from batches 2001 onwards from the deemed universities shall stand cancelled. The order of SC is a setback to the students as it put them at the risk of losing their jobs.
The correspondence degree in engineering or the distance learning programme are not recognised by the University Grants Commission (UGC) and All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) noted the SC. The Court further said that the recognition given by Distance Education Council (DEC) is not legal.
The order of supreme court observes that the UGC has failed to control the commercialisation of education and has directed the centre to develop a mechanism to oversee and regulate the deemed universities. The court noted that it is a incompetency and absence of serious scrutiny on the part of the regulatory system because of which these deemed universities are able to run and provide correspondence degrees in engineering for more more than a decade.
The court further noted that despite being disproved by the AICTE the universities such as JRN Rajasthan Vidyapeeth, Institute of Advanced Studies in Education in Rajasthan, Allahabad Agricultural Institute and Vinayaka Mission’s Research Foundation in Tamil Nadu are providing corresponding degree in engineering.
The court has asked the CBI to look into the universities which are still carrying on distance learning engineering programmes even after disapproval and has restrained the deemed universities from carrying on with the correspondence engineering courses from the academic session 2018-19.
The Court held the degrees of these deemed universities invalid starting from the batches 2001. However, the court had provided certain relief to the students from the batches 2001-2005. The Court held that the AICTE to arrange a test for students who have taken admission in these deemed universities from 2001-2005 and no student shall be given more than two chances to appear in the said. The students who will qualify the test can retain their degrees.
However the degrees of students of the batches after 2005, the court held that their degrees shall be recalled and any benefit which has been obtained as a result of having the said degree shall also be recalled. The court further said that the students whose degrees are being called shall be reimbursed by the universities in the full settlement of money paid by them to obtain the degree.