Indore: University Grants Commission has directed universities and colleges across the nation to ban sale of junk food on their campuses for sake of students’ health. “Banning junk food in colleges would set new standards for healthy food and make students’ life better.
This way, they will learn better and reduce obesity level, thus preventing life style diseases which have a direct link with excessive weight,” stated a letter issued by UGC secretary Rajnish Jain to universities. The letter was issued following directives of human resource development ministry.
“You are requested to ensure strict adherence to the advisory. Create awareness in younger generation who are vulnerable,” the UGC told higher education institutions (HEIs). The UGC has also asked the universities to implement measures to sensitise students on ill effects of junk food and conduct orientation programmes for faculty and staff on health issues.
“Universities can serve as important data source on student’s health. Information on body mass index (BMl)/percentage of body weight, waist-hip ratio etc can help in creating awareness among students towards their health,” the UGC letter added.
The UGC also directed universities to create wellness clusters at students welfare department where counselling on proper nutrition, right exercise and healthy habits can be given. “These wellness clusters can also provide psychological support to students to prevent and reduce obesity,” the UGC’s letter reads. Commission has asked HEIs to take appropriate steps and inform it about the action taken. When contacted, vice-chancellor Dr Narendra Dhakad said directions issued by ministry and UGC will be followed.
DAVV canteens sell junk food
The two DAVV canteens on its UTD campus mostly sell junk food like noodles, burgers, sandwiches, patties etc. One of the canteens also servers healthy food like curries, paneer dishes, curd, idli but they are less in demand. College canteens serve similar junk food.