A recent report by the office of the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) pointed out glaring discrepancies in the assessment and accreditation of higher education institutions by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC).
About National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC):
- NAAC was established in 1994 as an autonomous institution of the University Grants Commission (UGC).
- Head Quarter: Bengaluru.
- Function: Evaluation, assessment, and accreditation of Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) in the country.
- Assessment is a performance evaluation of an institution and its units and is accomplished through a process based on self-study and peer review using defined criteria.
- Accreditation refers to the certification given by NAAC, which is valid for a period of five years.
- The ratings of institutions range from A++ to C. If an institution is graded D, it means it is not accredited.
- At present, the Assessment and Accreditation by NAAC is done on a voluntary basis.
- It functions through its General Council (GC) and Executive Committee (EC), comprising educational administrators, policymakers, and senior academicians from a cross-section of the Indian higher education system.
- The Chairperson of the UGC is the President of the GC of the NAAC.
- The Chairperson of the EC is an eminent academician nominated by the President of GC (NAAC).
- The Director is the academic and administrative head of NAAC and is the member-secretary of both the GC and the EC.
- NAAC is advised by the advisory and consultative committees constituted from time to time.
Key Facts about University Grants Commission (UGC):
- It came into existence on 28th December 1953 and became a statutory Organization of the Government of India by an Act of Parliament in 1956.
- Objective: Coordination, determination, and maintenance of standards of teaching, examination, and research in university education.
- UGC provides recognition to universities in India and disburses funds to such recognized universities and colleges.
Q1) What is the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG)?
The Controller and Auditor General (CAG) of India is an authority, established by the Constitution of India under Chapter V, who audits all receipts and expenditure of the Government of India and the state governments, including those of bodies and authorities substantially financed by the government. The CAG is also the external auditor of government-owned companies.