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The Supreme Court has ordered that approval of All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) is not necessary for B.Tech Degree/ Diploma courses offered through distance mode by Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU).
The order was passed by a Bench of Justices Rohinton Fali Nariman and Indu Malhotra in a petition filed by around twenty-one IGNOU degree and diploma holders.
Senior Advocate Meenakshi Arora and advocate D Abhinav Rao appeared for the petitioners.
The petitioners had sought a clarification from the court that the technical education Degrees/ Diplomas granted to them through Open & Distance Learning Mode by IGNOU are valid and at par with Degrees/ Diplomas/ Certificates granted by any traditional university or AICTE recognised institution.
The Court in its order passed on July 30 noted that a similar matter namely, Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University vs. The Chairman and Managing Director, Transmission Corporation of Telangana Ltd. & Ors. (Civil Appeal Nos. 36973698/ 2018) was decided on April 10 this year.
In the said order, the Court had made it clear that given the fact that the appellant University, in that case, had been set up by a State Statute, it is enough that AICTE norms should be followed while granting the B.Tech Degree/Diploma and AICTE approval is not necessary for the same.
The Court held that it will follow the same order in the present case too. AICTE norms will be adhered to strictly by the institution in question but AICTE approval for the said course is not necessary, it held.
In November last year, the Supreme Court had restrained Deemed to be Universities from carrying on any courses in distance education mode from the Academic Session 2018- 2019 onwards unless specific permissions are granted by the concerned statutory/regulatory authorities for the same.
Read the order below.