There is no plan to raise the cutoff marks for sitting the Indian Institutes of Technology entrance examination, as it is a decision for the institutes to take and not the government, Union Human Resource Development Minister Kapil Sibal has said.
“Any reports indicating that students would need to score above 80 per cent (in class XII) for appearing in the joint entrance exam are baseless,” the minister said.
The government, he said, did not have the jurisdiction to decide the eligibility criteria.
“The eligibility criterion to appear in JEE (joint entrance exam) is decided by the IITs themselves,” Sibal said, a day after he favoured increasing the class XII qualifying marks from 60 per cent to 75-80 per cent.
The minister had made the remarks after chairing a meeting of the IIT Council, the apex decision-making body for the elite engineering institutes.
A check was necessary to squeeze out hundreds of coaching institutes who thrive by selling hope to unrealistic aspirants, he had said.
“Part of the solution (getting rid of the coaching system) is to increase the weight given to class XII exam as a criteria for taking the IIT-JEE.” The IITs will submit a report in January on rationalising the JEE.
“It is entirely their decision... It is they who will consider what weightage is to be given to the class XII examination,” Sibal said.
Reports on the plan to increase cutoffs saw Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar writing to Sibal, opposing the proposal. The proposal was discriminatory against students from lower economic strata, Kumar said.