Supreme Court on Power of Universities to go above and beyond the Regulations of AICTE

A new course in Artificial Intelligence was proposed to be introduced in APJ Abdul Kalam Technological University who had received approval from AICTE.The university denied the permission for the new course based on a Kerela Gov. Order which had inscribed new criterias for starting new courses.

This was challenged by the College before the High Court and partial relief was granted to the College.

This was appealed in the Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court held that Universities can’t dilute the norms prescribed by AICTE.

To quote:

“This Court held in Bharathidasan University and Another vs. All India Council for Technical Education and Others , that AICTE is not a super power with a devastating role undermining the status, authority and autonomous functioning of the Universities in areas and spheres assigned to them.

Quite unfortunately the AICTE has filed a counter affidavit before this Court supporting the case of the first Respondent College and branding the fixation of additional norms and conditions by the University as unwarranted. Such a stand on the part of the AICTE has compelled us to take note of certain developments that have taken place after 2012 on the AICTE front.”

It added:

“The position ever since 2012 has been that all applications for approval/extension of approval are processed by AICTE only online. Though AICTE has reserved to itself the power to conduct inspections and take penal action against colleges for false declarations, such penal action does not mean anything and does not serve any purpose for the students who get admitted to colleges which have necessary infrastructure only on paper and not on site,”

Thus the appeal was allowed and the judgment of the Kerela High Court was set aside.

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