Around 13.035 lakh students have registered for Joint Entrance Test, Main (JEE Main-2015), the first leg of the two-stage examination process for engineering admissions, scheduled in April.
However, there is a drop of around 52,500 students compared to last year when around 13.56 lakh students registered for exam.
The last day for registration for JEE (Main) was on December 27, but the dates were extended up to January 10 for aspirants from Manipur. The state had recently joined the nationallevel exam.
JEE Main, an all-India engineering entrance exam is conducted by the Central Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education (CBSE) for admission to centrally funded engineering institutions like National Institute of Technology (NIT) and others.
It is also the first screening test for IIT admissions.
While there has been a constant increase in number of candidates since 2012 this is the first time the number has dropped.
“Poor quality of faculty in the engineering colleges and increase in job opportunities in other streams could be the reasons for decrease in the number of people registering for JEE Main,” said an IIT aspirant.
However, in Maharashtra, for the academic year 2014-15, more than 40% of engineering seats remained vacant, according to data presented by the state’s higher and technical education minister during the recent winter session.
GT Thampi, principal, Thadomal Shahani College of Engineering, Bandra said, “This trend seems temporary. The interest in engineering education is decreasing because of the higher fees charged in engineering institute compared to other courses. However, placements in engineering institutes have suffered leaving many engineers unemployed.”