Amid India-Pakistan tensions, the University Grants Commission (UGC) has warned students against taking admission in institutions of Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK). "Pakistan administered Kashmir is an integral part of India. The educational institutions including universities, medical colleges, technical institutions situated in PaK are neither established by the Indian government nor recognised by statutory authorities including UGC, AICTE and Medical Council of India," UGC advisory read.
"The students are therefore cautioned and advised against taking admission in college, university or technical institution in any territory under illegal occupation of Pakistan, including the so called AJK (Azad Jammu and Kashmir) and Gilgit Baltistan which are currently not recognised in India," it added.
The act was condemned by the Private Schools Association of Jammu and Kashmir (PSAJK). The Association said that such directions negate the basic principle of SAARC cooperation, where both India and Pakistan are signatories. “India is part of SAARC group and all educational institutes in all the countries should be treated at par. One cannot pick and choose educational institutes in a particular region. Today they are barring educational institute in PaK and tomorrow they may bar educational institutes in other countries,” said G N Var chairman PSAJK.
“Besides impacting education of hundreds of students it will also have serious ramification in larger run. The SAARC group and all associated agreements have been honoured through many decades and hostile conditions including war and suddenly barring PaK educational institutes in PaK is beyond comprehension,” he said.