CMAT out because it is online, MH-CET in and it is online!

Post a 50% plus drop in MBA applications this year, the Department of Technical Education (DTE), Maharashtra, in quick time, managed to do away with CMAT and bring back the MH-CET.

Good move, said candidates.

But there is a not-so-good part to it, rather a bizarre part – which is that MH-CET will be online! Ironical, considering that the precise reason why CMAT was shown the door was because it is an online exam.

DTE officials have always maintained that CMAT is a no-show in the state because candidates staying in the more rural parts are not too computer-savvy and hence stay away. This year, according to reported figures, some 40% seats remained unoccupied as compared to 25% last year.

But then why have MH-CET online?

SK Mahajan, Director of DTE, Maharashtra explained that even though the next MH-CET will most probably be online, efforts will be taken to make the exam popular. “We will go to various platforms and explain how the exam works. We will also publish more advertisements and create more awareness. We will make sure MBA aspirants in the state know whatever is meant to be known about the exam.”

Dr Mahajan added that CMAT is not being done away with totally as 15% of seats will be taken up by other exams such as MAT, CAT, ATMA, XAT and CMAT.

Sources with DTE however tell us that DTE is talking to agencies like Aptech to conduct the online exam. Since Aptech is already co-ordinating with CMAT, good chances it will also conduct the new MH-CET and this is one of the reasons why the online version is being adopted. We however have no confirmation on this so far.

When asked about this irony, AICTE Chairman Mr SS Mantha replied: “CMAT has a value proposition for all concerned.” Mr Mantha’s original motive for starting CMAT was to have one common exam across the country which would be less hassling for candidates and also restrict expenses. At the moment, however CMAT has been demoted to just one of the many other exams.

There are other things not going in favour of CMAT which may have propelled DTE to recall MH-CET, a few of the court judgments to name one. The coming months will pave the direction for CMAT – will other states follow Maharashtra’s example, or will the exam regain some of its past glory.

The latest being however, that both CMAT and MH-CET, will probably be held in February 2014 (CMAT is confirmed).