The ministry has recommended to the MHRD last month granting deemed university status to FDDI whose students are demanding that they be given degrees instead of diplomas.
In a review meeting on the issue, Sitharaman “directed the concerned officials to expedite declaring FDDI as ‘Deemed to be University’,” the commerce ministry said in a tweet.
It said that the revised regulations of UGC, which are expected soon, will expedite process of conferring the status to the institute.
“Review meeting on the issue of FDDI was chaired by Commerce and Industry Minister Sitharaman today along with officials of Department of Commerce, Ministry of HRD & UGC. Review to continue tomorrow,” the tweet said.
Keen to resolve the issue, Sitharaman has held about a dozen of consultation meetings on the matter with the concerned ministries, departments, students and their parents.
Around 200 students of FDDI in Noida went on a rampage in April, ransacking the premises and damaging two buses, in protest against alleged failure of the institute to give them degrees instead of diplomas.
FDDI had signed an MoU with Mewar University in 2012 for awarding degrees. But last year, UGC had termed the MoU as illegal, sparking off protests by students.
From 2012 and 2014, around 3,609 students had taken admission in the institute.
The issue cropped up after the University Grants Commission (UGC) declared that Mewar University cannot award degrees to FDDI students.
The Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) used to grant degrees for all courses at the institute, but it discontinued the same in 2012 academic session even as 1,250 students were enrolled for various graduate and post-graduate programmes.
FDDI roped in Mewar University of Rajasthan to offer degree programmes from academic session 2012. However, UGC in September 2014 raised questions on the MoU between FDDI and Mewar University for grant of degree to FDDI students registered for the years 2012, 2013 and 2014 in light of the AICTE’s non-recognition of these degrees, ToI reported.