To resolve grievances of all the education stakeholders within a set deadline, the University Grants Commission (UGC) has announced consolidating the existing portal to launch the single platform e-Samadhan, this week. Under this, the operational UGC’s official online websites related to students’ grievance, scholarship-fellowship, Covid -19 counselling, jobs, and even the Centralized Public Grievance Redress and Monitoring System (CPGRAM) portal will be merged and will not work in isolation.The digital overhaul will provide a 24×7 functional, single online window system for all the stakeholders to register their complaints. Besides this, a toll-free number 1800-111-656 will also be activated for help. Students will be helped to resolve their problems related to withdrawing their admissions, once the CUET UG results are declared.
The CUET UG goals
The resolution of all institutional grievances has always been the top priority. Highlighting the portal’s key role in resolving challenges and issues faced by students, especially when CUET UG 2022 result date is approaching, M. Jagadesh Kumar, UGC, chairman says, “The admission authority will constitute a team to resolve the queries related to the withdrawal of admission by the students round the clock. Disposal of queries will be divided discipline-wise. Designated admission coordinators will monitor the queries and update the portal will be regularly. Further, multiple types of queries will be segregated based on discipline and issues, and then will be resolved accordingly. To confirm 100 per cent disposal of queries UGC will keep an eye on the whole process.”
Talking about the functioning of the portal, Kumar says, “Every stakeholder will have role-based access to this system and various complaints through a single platform can be filed easily. Complaint status and progress can also be tracked due to proper documentation and unique docket numbers allotted. The grievances will be reviewed by the bureau head and by the secretary/chairman on weekly basis, for effective implementation.”“The centralized online process will help to identify the institutions which are not responding to the grievances for appropriate stringent measures against them. After the closure of the grievance, if the complainant is not satisfied with the resolution, he/she can provide feedback also,” adds Kumar.
Excluding anti-ragging helplines
Only anti-ragging helplines/portals are kept outside the ambit of the e- Samadhan portal and for valid reasons. Kumar says, “Immediate actions are taken to help students through anti-ragging helplines. Whereas the e-samadhan portal will only focus on the registration of all the other grievances as an anti-ragging helpline provides immediate action and support to the suffering student. The response time of Anti Ragging helpline to reach out to such students is less than a minute, ideally, so it was not sensible to include this. Another reason for its exclusion is that a large number of complaints are registered here, daily. So, there could be a possibility that a genuine call could get no assistance, and avoiding this is also crucial.”
Benefits to stakeholders
The portal is set to add clarity and efficiency in resolving grievances. Reflecting the same idea, P. Deiva Sundari, principal, KCG College of Technology, Chennai says, “Currently, we need to search different portals and email IDs for grievances and queries submission. Still, a slight ambiguity persists whether the queries have reached the concerned bureaus or not. The maximum delay is encountered at this stage leading to delay in addressing problems. Now, with the advent of ‘e-Samadhan’, the process will be eased as the status of the query is updated periodically.”
Students from remote areas would be the major beneficiaries as visiting UGC offices for resolving their issues can pose several challenges. Kumar says, “Students can use this centralized platform to report irregularities in the admission process, withholding of original degrees, violation of SC/ST/OBC/EWS, women, minorities policy, and many other such cases of discrimination.”