University Grants Commission (UGC) is up to introduce the idea of cluster colleges as an alternative to the deemed universities. It has been seven years that the country has not witnessed any new deemed university. After the court case challenging the University Grants Commission regulation in 2010, no university came up till date. When the issue is still pending in court, UGC arrived in with this new plan.
UGC plans some of the colleges to be separated from some universities and be grouped together. The group of colleges will be changed into degree awarding institutions, provided they meet requirements. Osmania University which has 900 affiliated colleges under it, Pune University having 811 and Tamil Nadu Teachers Education University with 661 colleges are enlisted which are big enough and to cut off some of the colleges will be good.
UGC vice-chairman, H Devaraj, stated that UGC wants to get some big universities to disaffiliate some institutions. This will help the management in lessening the work load in making extraordinary efforts to ensure that one college meets university criteria. It will also be easy to club all colleges under the same management to bring it to university standards. These institutes cannot become deemed universities at the moment till the Tandon Committee report issue is resolved but can be considered as an alternative.
On 09 May 2014, a three-year bachelor of vocation (BVoc) course was approved by UGC which will be going beyond conventional arts, commerce and science streams.