Where everyone has been complaining about the education quality gone bad, Prime Minster Narendra Modi recently talked about a proposed legislature which will tear down education watchdogs like UGC and AICTE and create a new one (HEERA).
HEERA stands for Higher Education Empowerment Regulation Agency. It will be a single regulatory body which is being proposed to bring radical changes in the education sector.
With the launch of HEERA, a new law is going to come up soon as well. To shape this law, the Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry and the Niti Aayog are working together. Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant and Higher Education Secratary KK Sharma are the members of this committee.
The main obejective behind HEERA taking charge, discharging UGC and AICTE, is to eliminate overlaps in the jurisdiction. This would also help remove irrelevant regulatory provision.
The idea of a single regulatory body taking over multiple ones is not new. Committees like the Yashpal Committee and the National Knowledge Commission also made similar recommendations during the UPA rule but the reform never happened.
The education sector has been out of sync with the global practices due o separation of technical and non-technical education. A single regulator will bring a greater synergy among institutions.
UGC has been a toothless tiger and was deprived of penal power. This, in turn, weakened the proceedings of the institution. HEERA will, hence be more empowered and will be granted enough power to take penal power whenever necessary.
The scrapping of the UGC and AICTE will be a time-consuming process. The government will have to take interim measures and will also have to make amendments and modifications to AICTE, UGC Acts and regulations.