Even as Bar Council of India (BCI) is yet to release its final list of approved colleges, the Maharashtra Common Entrance Test (CET) Cell has decided to continue with the admission process.
On Saturday, the CET Cell allowed the aspirants to mark their preference of colleges. With many colleges in the state waiting for BCI’s approval, students can look at the list of approved institutes before making their choice.
The plan to start admissions has come as a sigh of relief to around 30,000 students across the state who appeared for the state’s first ever CET for three-year and five-year LLB courses. The test is the main reason for the delay. The other cause was that BCI had not cleared some institutes. While the registration process for admissions had begun on July 26, the students couldn’t mark preferences as the state was awaiting BCI approval which is necessary for colleges to start admissions.
Maharashtra has 128 colleges with 21,640 seats, but the BCI has granted approval to only half of them. The other colleges didn’t receive approval as they did not meet BCI’s faculty and infrastructure norms, while many of them failed to seek the apex body’s recognition in past few years. These colleges have been asked to pay fines and appoint additional teachers in order to be eligible for approval. The final approvals are likely to be granted on September 13.
On its website, the state CET Cell has used demarcated the colleges in four categories: the ones who are approved by BCI, the ones who are awaiting BCI’s approval, the ones who have sent the compliance report to BCI and those who are awaiting the state government’s approval. The students can choose among all these institutes.
“We held a meeting with BCI officials today seeking approval for the remaining colleges. As and when the BCI’s approvals come, we will change the status of college on our website,” said CET Cell official.
This year, for the first time, the government had decided to conduct a common entrance test (CET) for five-year and three-year LLB courses, and conduct admissions through the CAP. But, the initial time-table was revised multiple times due to numerous administrative and legal hurdles.
The troubles for the state CET Cell started early this year when the company selected through competitive bidding process to conduct the CET and CAP backed out.
Uncertainty prevailed over the fate of the examinations, after petitions questioning the legality of examination were filed in courts. While the Bombay High Court cleared the way for CET, the SC is now hearing an appeal against the HC verdict.
The admissions have been further deferred after BCI found that around 64 law colleges in the state don’t meet its norms. The colleges have been asked to apply again after meeting the norms.