Opposing NEP-2020 for non-academic reasons undermines students’ future
Mysore/Mysuru: University Grants Commission (UGC) Chairman Prof. Mamidala Jagadesh Kumar has expressed concerns regarding the implementation of the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020. He pointed out that there is opposition to NEP-2020 in some quarters, questioning the rationale behind such opposition and emphasising the policy’s significance as a national vision.
During his visit to city yesterday as chief guest at the 14th Convocation of JSS Academy of Higher Education and Research, Prof. Jagadesh Kumar also interacted with the media.
Appealing to the Karnataka Government to reconsider its decision to discard NEP-2020, he stressed the need for prioritising students’ interests. The UGC Chairman warned that students in Karnataka could face challenges if the State Government opts not to implement the policy, stating, “Ultimately, the students will suffer and policymakers must consider this.”
Highlighting that opposing NEP for non-academic reasons undermines the future of students, he mentioned the introduction of four-year undergraduate programmes with a research component in the fourth year. He expressed concern that if certain Universities or States do not implement these programmes, it could have a negative impact on students.
The Chairman stressed the importance of academic credits for student mobility and the need for consistent implementation, stating, “If you oppose NEP-2020 for non-academic reasons, you are only undermining the future of our students.”
With the launch of NEP-2020, India is viewed globally as an ideal destination for establishing campuses and investing in the higher education sector. The NEP envisions promoting India as a global study destination that provides affordable, excellent education, he said.
Establishing foreign campuses will offer wider educational choices, exposure to innovative pedagogical approaches and the potential for collaboration with world-class institutions. NEP-2020 provides a roadmap for more flexibility and accessibility to high-quality higher education, focusing on marginalised communities, according to Prof. Jagadesh Kumar.
Discussing the National Digital University, Prof. Jagadesh Kumar highlighted its focus on imparting skills to learners, offering flexibility in curriculum and courses. He informed about the establishment of the National Research Fund (NRF) with a corpus of Rs. 50,000 crore, fostering collaborations between Universities and industries to boost research.
Expressing confidence that the vision of a National Digital University would materialise within the next six months, Prof. Jagadesh Kumar emphasised that this initiative would reduce the cost of higher education. He also mentioned the ‘one nation, one data’ portal for educational institutions, facilitating data sharing to assess academic standards and rankings.
Turning attention to the University of Mysore, Prof. Jagadesh Kumar urged the institution to promptly fill vacant posts, considering the consistent advice from the UGC to address staffing shortages. Recognising the shortage of teaching faculties in State Universities, he urged the Government to take swift action to fill vacant positions, crucial for enhancing academic and research activities.