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J&K SSB refuses to accept distance education degrees
State Service Selection Board has refused to accept degrees obtained from universities outside the state under distance education due to which the future of hundreds of degree holders is at stake and risks the career of candidates in future.
STATE SERVICE Selection Board has refused to accept degrees obtained from universities outside under distance education due to which the future of hundreds of degree holders is at stake and risks the career of candidates in future. However, government indicated that the candidates obtained degrees by 2009 from non-state universities through distance education system would be considered as exceptional.

Service Selection Board issued notification on November 12 under ad No. 07 of 2010 by the Department of Education to fill the vacant teacher position, in which only Kashmir University, Jammu University, IGNOU, Maulana Azad National Urdu University and DOEACC degrees have been mentioned as valid and has refused to accept degrees under distance mode pursued form outside state.

Service selection board in this notification OM No: HE/LEGAL/2010 has quoted in clear words with reference to paragraphs (J) of notification issued by Higher education on 30 March 2010 that other than IGNOU and DOEACC degrees or diploma obtained under distance will not be accepted so far until these non-state degrees or diploma will not be accepted by Kashmir university and Jammu university and also by Jammu and Kashmir state board of technical education.

The fate of thousands of students who have already completed their degrees or are enrolled in courses run by study centres of outside Universities now hang in doldrums.

“University recognised by UGC, stand automatically recognised for the purpose of employment if approved by Distance Education Council (DEC) throughout the country including state of Jammu and Kashmir (Gazette of India 8th April 1995 MHRD Govt. of India) published in Greater Kashmir 18th. Sep-2008/Rising Kashmir/State Times/Kashmir Times etc where was the J&K Government when such notifications, advertisements, Articles where seen in leading news papers of Jammu and Kashmir”, said Nazir Ahamed, a student.

“Why anyone from the state government was not coming forward to close these study centres, why any action was not taken against persons who running such centres in the state?” he questioned.

According to UGC notification all the degrees awarded through distance mode should be accepted as equivalent to Regular degrees if approved by DEC for running programmes in distance mode. Universities can also run some of the Science/Technical/Professional courses through distance mode if approved by joint committee UGC-AICTE-DEC.

The Distance Education Council accords recognition to the Universities / Institutions to offer programmes through Distance Mode and it is for the Statutory bodies of the Universities / Institutions concerned to decide what programmes to be offered through distance mode.

Joint committee in its 35th meeting decided territorial jurisdiction for distance education programmes.

The council ruled that distance education and on-line education cannot be restricted to territorial jurisdiction. In the case of central and state universities the territorial jurisdiction will be adhered to as per the act, statutes and distance education regulations of the respective universities for all their programmes.

“If universities of Jammu and Kashmir are recognised by same UGC/AICTE/DEC and are member of same AIU than how their degree is valid and those who have acquired degrees through outside universities is invalid. We have done degrees from UGC/AICET/DEC /AIU approved universities” said Hilal Ahmad.“If there was any logical reason to ban degrees obtained from distance education or study centres of outside universities In Jammu and Kashmir then why the authorities never come up with such notification before, he added.

The recognition policy of the DEC says in its clause (v) regarding the territorial jurisdiction. The distance education council has decided not to insist on territorial jurisdiction to be followed by institutions in offering programmes through distance and on-line modes and on that matter, universities should be governed by their own acts and status and in clause (vi). Approvals to study centres: the DEC does not consider giving approvals to study centres of any distance education institution as opening of study centres and regional centres is an internal policy matter of the institution/ university concerned, as per the provision in their own act /statutes.

“Why SSRB, School Education Department, PSC accepted all the degrees through distance mode, interviewed them and recruited many among them in different Govt. Department’s till end of 2009.Till end of 2009 PSC/SSRB used to say that we accept all the degrees through distance mode why the deceived many students. What about those students who were in a big Hope that their degrees are valid by SSRB, PSC, School Education Department and other Recruiting Agencies” said a group of non-state degree holders.

Many students said that the State Govt must consider all candidates who have either completed or already enrolled in such centres before July 2009.
Reports said that Numbers of students who have acquired their degrees have moved to High Court for justices.

A group of students asked, “There are limited seats in universities of Jammu and Kashmir some of the students have resources they go outside for regular education but some have limited resources they choose the way of Distance Education There are many courses which are not offered by universities of Jammu and Kashmir, IGNOU, DOEACC there remains no option for the students to get admission through Outside Universities”.


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