The University Grants Commission of India is known as UGC. It is a legal body entrusted with the coordination, determination, and maintenance of higher education standards, established by the Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Education, Government of India in line with the UGC Act 1956. It grants recognition to Indian universities and colleges, as well as funding to those recognised universities and schools. New Delhi is the headquarters, with regional offices in Pune, Bhopal, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Guwahati, and Bangalore. The Government of India is considering a plan to replace it with a new regulatory organisation named HECI. All candidates who pass the National Eligibility Test with a JRF score receive doctorate fellowships from the UGC. 

The UGC was established in 1945 to monitor the operations of Aligarh, Banaras, and Delhi, three Central Universities. In 1947, its jurisdiction was expanded to include all Indian institutions.

A recommendation was made in August 1949 to resurrect the UGC following the lines of the University Grants Committee of the United Kingdom. This suggestion was made by the University Education Commission of 1948–1949, which was established “to report on Indian university education and advise improvements and expansions” under the presidency of S. Radhakrishnan.

The government determined in 1952 that the UGC would be in charge of all funding to universities and higher learning institutes. Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, the Minister of Education, Natural Resources, and Scientific Research, then gave an inaugural speech on December 28, 1953.