Criticising the UGC directive, he said such a regulatory mechanism was not in compliance with the market reality and in a market economy, the state universities should be allowed to open their campuses in other parts of the country as it will encourage competition and improve quality of education.
“State universities have been given a jurisdiction. They say the Mumbai University cannot operate outside Maharashtra, Delhi University cannot open campus in Chennai, Calcutta University cannot open campus in Madhya Pradesh. This kind of regulation is against the encouragement to the quality education,” he said.
In its regulation issued to Vice Chancellors last August, UGC said that a university established or incorporated or under a State Act shall operate only within the territorial jurisdiction allotted to it under its Act in no case beyond the territory of the state of its location.
Arora said such a directive comes at a time when the government is trying to clear a bill in Parliament to allow foreign education providers set up campuses in India and offer degrees.
“This kind of regulatory mechanism is not in compliance with the market reality as on today. You are inviting foreign universities to have good competition. But you are not allowing your own universities to come out of their states,” he told PTI.
With this regulation, students are compelled to have their education only in their local universities or otherwise they have to move out to some other institution, said Arora, who graduated from IIT Delhi in 1979.
Referring to media reports, he said in the past 10 years, 37 lakh students have come out of their states for studies.
Talking about problems in the technical education sector, he said about five-six years ago, students used to “chase” colleges or universities.
“Now the things are other way around. The universities and colleges are chasing students. The number of institutions which have come up is much larger as compared to the number of students which are available for technical education.
“Today, about 16 lakh students take admission all over the country in engineering but the number of seats which have been sanctioned by the All India Council for Technical Education is more than 20 lakhs.