Admissions suspended, Punjabi varsity’s Mehraj campus to start new courses from next session
The Punjabi University administration has decided to roll out a new set of job-oriented programmes from the next session at the College of Engineering and Management (CoEM), its neighbourhood campus at Bathinda’s Mehraj village, after having suspended admissions in all courses this year.
Prof Pushpinder Singh Gill, dean, external centres, said the Mehraj campus is likely to have a new post of director for an efficient administration. “A university panel found that the courses offered at CoEM were obsolete that had fewer takers for the past several years. Poor choice of academic courses led to a dismal response from students in southern Punjab. The management courses were discontinued within 2-3 years of starting the campus. Moreover, the centre administration was found inefficient that affected the academic environment,” said Gill.
Campus in-charge Lakhwinder Singh Rakhra did not respond to phone calls and text messages. The campus was started in 2005 by then Capt Amarinder Singh-led Congress government to provide better opportunities in the academically backward south Malwa belt. The panchayat of Mehraj, the ancestral place of Amarinder Singh, donated about 25-acre land to build the campus.
The CoEM was offering 11 courses, including a master’s in computer application, two BTech programmes, three diplomas, BSc and lateral admissions in various courses.
The campus has 17 faculty members, including 12 regular teachers.
A faculty member said more than half of the 60 BTech seats remained vacant for the last several years. “Computer applications was the only sought after programme in which 30 seats each for a post-graduate degree and a diploma course were filled,” he added.
Prof Gill said the new courses will be decided to meet the aspirations of students from southern Punjab. “The infrastructure of CoEM will be utilised for better academic programmes that open job opportunities for students. The faculty will be adjusted at Tapasavi Puran Dass Malwa College, the university’s constituent college, at the campus in adjoining Rampura Phul subdivision, and other institutes,” said Gill.