26 March, 2019

Regional Centre

Message from Regional Director

Dear Learners,


I deem it an honour and modest privilege to present GAASH, the Light (Regional Centre Srinagar Profile) on the occasion of Silver Jubilee year of Indira Gandhi National Open University.


With about 360 universities and 18600 colleges, Indian system of higher education is one of the fastest growing systems in the world. However, in spite of tremendous expansion recorded in its higher educational system, even now one-third of its adult population is illiterate and only about 10% of the eligible age group get enrolled in higher education. The conventional higher education is not flexible enough to cope up with the scale of educational challenge and respond to the need-based education and training. Lack of resources is one of the major impediments in realizing the national goal of universalization of elementary education and vocationalisation of secondary education. Therefore, the technologies of different kinds need to be harnessed to supplement the conventional teaching and learning process.


As one of the leading mega universities of the world, IGNOU’s reach now extends to over 2.5 million students in India and 36 other countries of the world, offering 338 programmes through a network of 61 Regional Centres, about 3000 Learner Support Centers and 60 overseas centers in 36 countries. It has got approximately 36,000 Academic Counsellors. Approximately 6.4 lac students appeared for TEE in 2009. Till 2009, 9.75 lac students have been awarded Degrees/Diploma/Certificates.


Keeping in view the peculiar geo-physical conditions, educational backwardness and inherent potential for the development of distance and open learning system in J&K, a Regional Centre of IGNOU was established at Srinagar in February 1999, on the recommendation of the task group on Education set up by the MHRD to identify the educational requirements of the State. The Centre was established with jurisdiction over Kashmir Division including Leh and Kargil.


Regional Centre started its journey from just one room of the Department of Commerce at University of Kashmir, with just four Study Centres, 14 Programmes and around 1000 students. With only 10 years of its existence, RC Srinagar has already enrolled well over 70,000 students. It is a matter of great pride for IGNOU in Kashmir that with the average admission figure of over 10000 students every year in recent past, it has recorded one of the highest per capita enrolments in the country. We continue to register the largest enrolments in MEG, MPS, MSO, MPA and similar other programmes since their launch. In year 2009 our enrolment has increased to 11441 against 10417 in 2008, registering an increase of over 30% in the enrollment over the previous year.


Not only in admissions, our students are also performing exceedingly well in the examinations. Around 400 learners opted to receive Degree/Diploma/Certificates at the 21st Convocation at Srinagar This time also one of our students namely Mr. Aijaz Ahmad Shalla has been awarded the Gold Medal for MBA in Banking and Finance. Almost all the high quality academic, professional, vocational and awareness generation programmes are available in the valley.


At present IGNOU is operating practically in every nook and corner of Kashmir Division through a network of 34 study centers, comprising 11 Regular Study Centers, 19 Programme Study Centers and 4 Special Study Centers. The recent centers established include the ones in Degree Colleges of Ganberbal and Shopian. One of the Special Study Centers already stands established for Jail inmates at the Central Jail, Srinagar, for whom the fees has now been waived-off by IGNOU. A Special Study Centre has just been established for physically challenged people. To reach the other unreached areas, some fresh proposals are under consideration.


IGNOU has come out with a landmark initiative of Community College which was formally launched on July 4, 2009. The scheme is targeted towards providing an alternative system of education to those, who for some reason or the other have missed the opportunity of mainstream education. IGNOU and Indian Army have signed an MOU to start 47 IGNOU-Army Community College known as Gyandeep. Some Community Colleges in Kashmir have also been approved.


Open and distance education, because of its inherent flexibility in terms of entry, pace and place of learning, methods of evaluation etc. holds the promise of providing equality of opportunities of education and bringing into its fold the deprived and denied people of the Kashmir valley, which is otherwise not possible through traditional means, in view of the prevailing situation.


For the capacity building and strengthening of higher education, a new Convergence scheme has been conceived, making the optimal use of the strengths of the conventional and ODL systems. So far 427 Partners Institutions in conventional higher education institutions have enrolled over 42,000 students. In Kashmir 4 Partner Institutions are already operational under the scheme. A number of other institutions of the valley are being covered under this scheme.


The educational system in the valley is witnessing the dawn of new era as a full-fledged FM GyanVani radio station has been set up by IGNOU at Radio Kashmir Srinagar exclusively for education, training and development in Kashmir. The educational programmes are broadcast not only for IGNOU students but also for those pursuing school, higher, technical and professional education in valley. The timing of educational broadcast at present is from 8 am to 1pm and from 3 pm to 8 pm daily.


IGNOU’S massive and extensive operations are required to be handled effectively and efficiently under very tight frame of schedules. This is not possible without extensive support, understanding and cooperation extended by various quarters. For our achievements, we have received valuable support from the J&K State Government, the University of Kashmir and various agencies connected with the development of Higher Education, our colleagues at Study Centres, our learned academic counselors and above all the Heads of host institutions of our study centres.


Finally, I thank Allah and acknowledge the support of all my staff members at RC Srinagar. For the design and graphics of GAASH, Mr Peer Javeed Iqbal deserves special commendation.


Dr. Nurul Hasan

Regional Director I/c