This year, Telangana may observe a reduction in the number of engineering seats as 41 private engineering colleges in the state have approached the apex technical education regulator for permission to shut down.
The All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) has received 227 applications for closure this year; Telangana leads the pack of states that are seeking education regulator’s permission to shut down private engineering colleges.
Fearing a drop in the number of students taking up technical and professional courses such as engineering, polytechnic and computer science, 41 private engineering colleges from the state have forwarded applications to AICTE seeking closure.
“Post-bifurcation, several colleges saw a drop in the number of students opting for technical and professional courses. There were 1.25 lakh seats up for grabs last year, of which 45,000 seats remained vacant. The students from Andhra Pradesh prefer to take admissions in the colleges there. Therefore, even colleges now plan to shift their focus to AP,” said Gawtham Rao, president of the Telangana Private Engineering Colleges Association.
According to sources, colleges are likely to shut down after the Telangana government clears the fee arrears, which run in crores.
Several colleges are also closing down citing poor intake and strict guidelines issued by the Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University, Hyderabad (JNTU-H). Out of the total 1,289 applications to shut undergraduate and postgraduate courses, 302 are from Telangana alone. “The affiliation process is extremely strict as the University is seeking minute details on lab equipment, land, infrastructure, faculty details, etc. Therefore, colleges which are unable to fulfil norms are closing down,” said a senior official from the higher education department.
The Telangana State Council of Higher Education has received 1,43,286 applications for the engineering stream in the Engineering, Agriculture and Medicine Common Entrance Test that is scheduled to be held on May 2, 2016. However, many fear that the number of seats may drop following the closure of colleges. “This year, only 1.05 lakh seats may be up for grabs as colleges that fail to obtain affiliation from the JNTU-H will also not be allowed to admit students,” said Rao.
Last year, the AICTE had allowed 121 colleges to shut their shops, and 1,093 were asked to stop operations after they failed to adhere to its norms.