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According to a new guideline from the University Grants Commission (UGC), PhD students will not be permitted to pursue two academic degrees at the same time, according to M. Jagadesh Kumar, head of India's higher education authority.

According to rules released in April, students from all other courses, including diploma, undergraduate, and postgraduate programmes, would be permitted to pursue two academic programmes either in person or virtually, Kumar added.

In a letter sent to all higher education institutions on Friday, the commission asked them to develop legal frameworks that would let students to simultaneously enrol in two academic programmes. On the other hand, it was made clear that "guidelines shall be relevant exclusively to the students pursuing education institutions other than PhD programmes."

According to Kumar, PhD students cannot participate in these double degree programmes since they must concentrate on their research in order to contribute to the development of new knowledge in their field.