The government polytechnic college at Kotkapura, the only state-run college in the district, has failed to function to the fullest since its inauguration as it has been facing acute shortage of teaching staff.
As of now, the college has reportedly three lecturers against the required strength of 15, as per sources. The lack of teaching staff has also affected the intake of students as it has managed to admit only 15 students this year in three streams against the sanctioned 300 seats.
The college offers five diploma courses after matriculation in mechanical, civil engineering, electrical, computer and electrical communications with 60 seats in each discipline. Earlier, it was supposed to offer pharmacy diploma course but from the coming session electrical engineering will be started instead.
The foundation stone of the polytechnic college was laid in February 2010 on 9 acres donated by the panchayat of Kotkapura Dehati. Even four years after the foundation stone was laid, the institution is yet to start functioning to benefit students of all nearby areas of the district.
The polytechnic college could be beneficial to the students from Faridkot district that has a population of 6.18 lakh and does not have any other government polytechnic college. To get technical education, students have to either approach private colleges or go to government polytechnic college at Guru Teg Bahadurgarh in Moga district.
In the last session, too, the college could admit only 11 students due to alleged delay in grant of affiliation by the All India Council for Technical Education, sources said, adding that these students had been studying in its patron college at Moga, as the Kotkapura college had failed to function properly during the last session.
"As the college has been facing acute shortage of teaching staff, it could not admit students. Most of the posts of the teaching staff are lying vacant and if the situation does not improve, it will also fail to attract students during the next session, which will commence from May 2014," claimed a source.
The college workshop also needs a boundary wall though the work on the building seems to be complete. It was among the seven polytechnic colleges opened in 2010 across the state.
"The college could be an asset for students from all nearby areas, particularly the rural belt, but government must pay some attention to enable it function to its full capacity because private education is becoming very costly as compared to government institutions," said Darshan Singh, former sarpanch of Dhilwan Kalan village.
As per Sukhdev Singh, principal of the college, "Shortage of staff is a problem in the college, but we have written about it to our higher authorities and hope to get the required staff soon. We shall admit the students as per our capacity from the next year and there will be no hassle in the smooth functioning of the institute."
Faridkot deputy commissioner Mohammad Tayyab said, "I shall take up the matter with the Punjab technical education department to complete all arrangements in the college."