Indian Universities Act, 1904 - Informative & researched article on Indian Universities Act, 1904
 Indianetzone: Largest Free Encyclopedia of India with thousand of articlesEducation

 Art & Culture|Entertainment|Health|Reference|Sports|Society|Travel
Forum  | Free E-magazine  | RSS Feeds  
History of India|Indian Temples|Indian Museums|Indian Literature|Geography of India|Flora & Fauna|Indian Purans|Indian Philosophy|Indian Administration|Indian Languages|Education
Home > Reference > Education > Indian Universities > Indian Universities Act
Indian Universities Act, 1904
The Indian Universities Act, 1904, was formulated to act into account the ways and means of improving the education facilities and infra structures in the country.
 The recommendations of the Hunter Commission for the proper system of education in India however did not meet with success. The education procedure in India was not carried on in accordance with the recommendations of the Commission. Hence Lord Curzon after becoming the governor general of India sought to introduce the reforms in all fields of administration and also in education. In September 1901, Curzon summoned the highest educational officers of the Government throughout India and representatives of universities at a round table Conference at Simla. The Conference opened with a speech by the Viceroy in which he surveyed the whole field of education in India. "We have not met here" he said, "to devise a brand new plan of educational reform which is to spring fully armed from the head of the Home Department and to be imposed nolens volens upon the Indian public". Later developments were to prove the hypocrisy behind this assertion. The Conference adopted 150 resolutions which touched almost every conceivable branch of education. This was followed by the appointment of a Commission under the presidency of Sir Thomas Raleigh on 27 January 1902 to enquire into the condition and prospects of universities in India and to recommend proposals for improving their constitution and working. Evidently, the Commission was precluded from reporting on primary or secondary education. As a result of the report of the recommendations of the Commission the Indian Universities Act was passed in 1904. The main objective of the Act was to improve the condition of education in India and upgrade the system to a better level. The main changes proposed were as under:

(i) The universities were desired to make provision for promotion of study and research, to appoint university professors and lecturers, set up university laboratories and libraries and undertake direct instruction of students.
(2) The Act lay down that the number of Fellows of a university shall not be less than fifty or more than a hundred and a Fellow should normally hold office for a period of six years instead of for life.
(3) Most of the Fellows of a university were to be nominated by the Government. The elective element at University of Calcutta, Madras (Chennai) and Bombay (Mumbai) was to be twenty each and in case of other universities fifteen only.
(4) The Governor control over the universities was further increased by vesting the Government with powers to veto the regulations passed by the Senate of a university. The Government could also make additions or alterations in the regulations framed by the Senate and even frame regulations itself over and above the head of the Senate.
(5) This particular Act increased university control over private colleges by laying down stricter conditions of affiliation and periodical inspection by the Syndicate. The private colleges were required to keep a proper standard of efficiency. The Government approval was necessary for grant of affiliation or disaffiliation of colleges.
(6) The Governor-General-in-Council was empowered to define the territorial limits of a university or decide the affiliation of colleges to universities. The Nationalist opinion both inside and outside the Legislative Council opposed the measure.

Gopal Krishna Gokhale described the bill `a retrograde measure` which cast unmerited aspersion on the educated classes of the country and was designed to perpetuate "the narrow, bigoted and inexpensive rule of experts." The Sadler Commission of 1917 commented that the Act of 1904 made `the Indian universities among the most completely governmental universities in the world`.

Indian opinion believed that Curzon sought to reduce the universities to the position of departments of the State and sabotage development of private enterprise in the field of education. Ronaldshay, Curzon`s biographer, admits that "the changes actually brought about were small and out of all proportion either to the time and thought which the Viceroy had devoted to them or to the violence of the opposition with which they had been assailed. In its broad outline the system of higher education remained much as it has been before."

However, a good outcome of Curzon`s policy was the sanction in 1902 of a grant of Rs. 5 lakhs per annum for five years for improvement of higher education and universities. The Government grants have become a permanent feature ever since then.

(Last Updated on : 18/06/2011)
More Articles in Indian Universities  (232)
Recently Updated Articles in Education
Kerala Law Entrance Examination
Kerala Law Entrance Examination is the admissions test that is conducted by the Commissioner for Entrance Examinations, Thiruvananthapuram. This entrance test is undertaken by those students who are willing to pursue LLB and LLM courses.
Karnataka Common Entrance Test (CET)
Karnataka Common Entrance Test (CET) is organized by the Karnataka Examinations Authority, Bengaluru (KEA) on behalf of the Karnataka government. The main purpose of conducting this entrance test is the admissions of the students to the first year of several medical, engineering and dental degree course programmes.
Joint Entrance Screening Test (JEST)
Joint Entrance Screening Test (JEST) is the screening test that is organized by some renowned premier institutes of the country for the PhD level programmes. Candidates who are willing to go for PhD programmes need to appear for this test.
Joint Admission Test to M. Sc (JAM)
Joint Admission Test to M.Sc (JAM) is the admissions test that is conducted by the IITs for judging the capabilities of the students throughout the country. This test is conducted for taking admissions in the high quality M. Sc courses offered by the IITs.
Jharkhand Combined Entrance Competitive Examination (JCECE)
Jharkhand Combined Entrance Competitive Examination is conducted for selecting the suitable candidates for several medical, agricultural and engineering degree programmes. This common entrance examination is held by the Jharkhand Combined Entrance Competitive Examination Board (JCECEB).
E-mail this Article | Post a Comment
Forum on Education
Free E-magazine
Subscribe to Free E-Magazine on Reference
Indian Universities Act, 1904 - Informative & researched article on Indian Universities Act, 1904
Contact Us   |   RSS Feeds
Copyright © 2008 Jupiter Infomedia Ltd. All rights reserved including the right to reproduce the contents in whole or in part in any form or medium without the express written permission of
Jupiter Infomedia Ltd.