Yashpal Committee - UPSC notes

The Government of India set up a Committee on Higher Education under the Ministry of Human Resource Development known as the Yashpal Committee. 

For UPSC Aspirants, it is important to know which ministry and committees deal with what issues and concerns as this can be asked in the UPSC Prelims exam. It is also important to know these details because it helps in understanding how the government machinery works in India.

Yashpal Committee Report 

In the year 2009, the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) had set up a Committee on Higher Education known as the Yashpal Committee.

  • The chairman of the committee was Dr Yash Pal, and it was constituted for examining reforms to be brought about in higher education in India. 
  • Yash Pal was a globally renowned physicist, academic, and higher education reformer.

In its report, the Yashpal Committee laid emphasis on the idea of a university and advocated a number of major structural changes.

Recommendations of the Yashpal Committee Report

Following are the important recommendations of the Yashpal Committee Report:

  • In the Final Report submitted by the committee to the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD), it was recommended that the deemed university status should be abandoned.
  • It was also recommended that all the deserving deemed universities should be either converted to full-fledged universities or would have to be scrapped.
  • The report also said that a GRE like test needs to be evolved for the purpose of university education.
  • The committee recommended that bodies like the NCTE, AICTE, UGC and others must be replaced by a Commission for Higher Education and Research (CHER) – a seven-member body.
  • It was recommended that this new regulator must be free from political pressures.
  • The position of the chairperson of CHER was recommended to be parallel to that of the election commissioners.
  • It was recommended that the universities must take up all the academic responsibilities, restricting the jurisdiction of the other regulators such as the Bar Council of India, the Medical Council of India, etc. to administrative matters alone.
  • The report said that IITs and IIMs should be encouraged to diversify and expand their scope to work as full-fledged universities.

Yash Pal Committee – Learning Without Burden

In 1993, the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD), Government of India, had set up a National Advisory Committee, with Yash Pal as chairman, to go into the issue of overburdening of school children. This committee is also sometimes called the Yash Pal Committee. Hence, students should keep in mind, there are two Yash Pal Committees as mentioned in the table below:

Year  Name of the Committee (both are also known as Yash Pal Committee) Chairman Report Objective 
2009 Committee to Advise on Renovation and Rejuvenation of Higher Education Dr Yash Pal Yash Pal Committee Report/Report on Higher Education To advise on renovation and rejuvenation of higher education
1993 National Advisory Committee Dr Yash Pal Learning without Burden To advise on the ways and means to reduce the load on school students at all levels particularly the young students, while improving quality of learning including the capability for life-long self-learning and skill formulation.

 

A few major recommendations of the Yash Pal Committee, 1993 are given below:

  1. The process of framing of the curriculum and writing of textbooks should be decentralised and involve more teachers.
  2. Education committees should be constituted at the village, block and district levels.
  3. The jurisdiction of CBSE should be restricted to KVs and the Navodaya Vidyalayas only, and all other schools should be affiliated with the respective state boards.
  4. Interview tests and interviews for nursery admissions should be done away with.
  5. The norms for giving private schools recognition need to be more stringent, to avoid commercialisation.
  6. There should be no compulsion for school children to carry heavy books to school.
  7. Primary school children should not be given any homework. And even for the higher classes, it should be non-textual.
  8. The teacher-pupil ratio should be reduced to at least 1:30.
  9. Greater use of electronic media.
  10. It also recommended many steps for improving teacher training.

The report of the committee, entitled “Learning without Burden”, is now regarded as a seminal document in Indian education.

  • Considering these observations, the Executive Committee of the NCERT decided at its meeting of 2004, to revise the National Curriculum Framework.
  • The National Curriculum Framework (NCF) which had been prevailing, without any change, for 14 years, is to be reviewed by the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT). This revision is said to be in accordance with the new National Education Policy (NEP).
  • So far, the NCF has undergone revision four times, in 1975, 1988, 2000 and 2005, making the proposed new review to be the fifth.

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