Updated May 29th, 2024 at 16:14 IST

UGC Issues Notice to Combat Caste-Based Discrimination in Higher Education, Takes Major Steps

UGC has suggested that institutions form a committee tasked with handling complaints from SC, ST, and OBC students.

Reported by: Nandini Verma
UGC | Image:PTI
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The University Grants Commission (UGC) has taken a proactive stance against caste-based discrimination within Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) across the nation. In a recent notice addressed to college and university authorities, the UGC emphasized the urgent need to eradicate all forms of discrimination against students belonging to Scheduled Castes (SC), Scheduled Tribes (ST), and Other Backward Classes (OBC).

HEIs have been urged to adhere to a series of measures outlined by the UGC to combat caste-based discrimination effectively. Officials and faculty members have been explicitly instructed to refrain from engaging in any discriminatory behavior towards SC, ST, and OBC students based on their social backgrounds.

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Furthermore, the UGC has mandated that institutions establish a dedicated webpage on their official websites specifically for lodging complaints related to caste discrimination against SC, ST, and OBC students. This online platform should be complemented by a physical complaint register available in the office of the registrar or principal. The notice emphasizes that any incidents of discrimination brought to the attention of authorities must be promptly addressed, with appropriate action taken against the responsible officials or faculty members.

To ensure a fair and impartial resolution of grievances, the UGC has suggested that institutions form a committee tasked with handling complaints from SC, ST, and OBC students, as well as instructors and non-teaching staff. Importantly, this committee should include members representing the SC, ST, and OBC categories.

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The UGC underscores the importance of college and university administrators demonstrating sensitivity in dealing with caste discrimination complaints. It has called for these guidelines to be widely disseminated to all participating and affiliated colleges to ensure comprehensive implementation.

Lastly, the UGC has instructed institutions to provide detailed information in the prescribed format on the University Activity Monitoring Portal (UAMP) regarding discrimination complaints received by college authorities for the academic years 2023-24. Colleges are required to submit this information by July 31, enabling the UGC to monitor and address instances of caste-based discrimination effectively.

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Published May 29th, 2024 at 16:14 IST