Vikash Sharma

The University Grants Commission (UGC) released an important notice regarding the UGC (Redressal of Grievances of Students) Regulations, 2023.

In a letter to the all vice-chancellors of universities, the UGC has said to organise at least one meeting of the Ombudsperson(s) every six months at the beginning of the semester with the students.

On February 5, the UGC Chairman had discussed the implementation of the UGC (Redressal of Grievances of Students) Regulations, 2023 with the Ombudspersons of the Universities in a virtual meeting.

It is mandatory for all higher education institutions to appoint ombudspersons to address student complaints. Students, facing any of the following, can approach the ombudsperson of their institution:

1. Irregularities in admission

2. Refusal to admit according to the institution’s declared admission policy

3. Non-publication of a prospectus or publishing false/misleading information

4. Withholding or refusal to return any document to induce payment of unnecessary fees

5. Demanding money beyond specified charges in the admission policy

6. Violation of laws regarding reservation of seats in admission

7. Non-payment or delayed payment of scholarships or financial aid

8. Delay in examinations, result declaration, or failure to provide specified student amenities

9. Non-transparent or unfair evaluation practices

10. Delay or denial of fees refund for withdrawing students

11. Complaints of discrimination against specific categories of students

12. Denial of promised quality education

13. Harassment or victimisation of students, excluding cases under penal provisions

14. Actions contrary to the institution’s statures, ordinances, rules, regulations, or guidelines

15. Actions contrary to UGC regulations and guidelines issued by the Commission, or the concerned regulatory body

According to UGC, there is a need to increase the awareness among students about the provisions made by universities for the implementation of UGC Student Grievances Regulations, 2023.

At the meeting, it was also suggested that there should be periodic meetings of the Vice-Chancellor and the Ombudsperson(s) to review the implementation of the Regulations, 2023.

Meanwhile, the UGC has listed several steps to make the students aware about the implementation of the UGC Student Grievances Regulations, 2023. These include:

- Placing banners/boards in prominent locations throughout the campus, as well as on the campuses of affiliated colleges

- Publishing information on the websites/Bulletin of Information