Absence of an authority for the students to get their issues resolved in a number of universities has long been an issue on the priority list of the authorities. The UGC (University Grants Commission) aims to rectify this now. As per a new direction by the Delhi High Court to the UGC, every University must appoint an ombudsman along with a GRC (Grievance Redressal Committee) for each and every college or the group of colleges.
The Court has given a period of four months to the UGC to abide by its decision and set up the required mechanisms in all the colleges. The court reminded the UGC that the provision for appointing these authorities has been given in the UGC (Grievance Redressal) regulations of 2012.
As per the Court, if the UGC fails to do the needful, it "would defeat the very object of grievance redressal mechanism provided under the regulations". It also directed Delhi University (DU) to "take necessary steps forthwith and appoint the ombudsman" in terms of provisions of the regulations "as expeditiously as possible preferably within a period of four months from today".
The ruling by the Delhi High Court came when the court was disposing a PIL (Public Interest Litigation) filed by a former student of law. The litigant accused the UGC of violating its own regulations by not appointing ombudsman for several universities, including the DU (Delhi University).
The court said that as mentioned in the UGC regulations, the appointed ombudsman "shall be a part-time officer appointed for a period of three years or until he attains the age of 70 years, whichever is earlier".