Number of engineering seats to shrink by 2.2 lakh: AICTE
The AICTE has approved 54,618 seats across diploma, undergraduate and postgraduate institutes this year. While AICTE has not shared stream- wise information on seats, most colleges said they had applied for new divisions in information technology.Updated: May 18, 2019 12:48 IST
With poor demand forcing engineering colleges to reduce seats in mechanical and civil streams, there will be 2.21 lakh fewer seats in diploma, undergraduate or postgraduate courses across the country in 2019-20.
According to the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) data, there are 3,660 universities or institutes offering diploma courses (10,25,408 seats) this year, and 3,122 offering undergraduate or postgraduate courses (14,66,114 seats). In 2018-19, there were 3,779 universities or institutes offering diploma courses (11,25,214 seats), and 3,241 offering undergraduate or postgraduate courses (15,87,097 seats).
The AICTE has approved 54,618 seats across diploma, undergraduate and postgraduate institutes this year. While AICTE has not shared stream- wise information on seats, most colleges said they had applied for new divisions in information technology. Of the new seats approved, Karnataka has the biggest share (11,431), followed by Uttar Pradesh (6,987). Telangana (7,836) and Maharashtra (6,895) saw the biggest drop in seats. In Maharashtra alone, 27 diploma/polytechnics requested for closure, bringing down the total intake by 6,355, highest in the country.
“Until a few years ago, reduction in the intake capacity of engineering colleges would be less than 70,000-80,000, but this year the intake capacity of UG and PG engineering institutes has dropped by more than 1.20 lakh. Except for a few streams of engineering, colleges are refusing to continue classes for courses that are not in demand,” said a senior official from AICTE.
The final list of approved colleges and colleges allowed to either reduce their intake capacity or shut altogether was released earlier this week.
The directorates of technical education (DTEs) of six states, including Maharashtra, had requested the AICTE not to approve any new institutes in their respective states. The seat vacancy in engineering institutes in 2018-19 stood at 49.30%.
In December, a specially appointed committee suggested a two-year ban on new engineering institutes, starting 2020. “As this is the last year to start new colleges, there was an increase in the number of institutes that approached the council. Over the next two years, we will also encourage bigger and established colleges to mentor smaller institutes struggling with seat vacancy,” said Anil Sahasrabuddhe, director, AICTE.
Experts said there was a bigger problem. “Instead of shutting down colleges and bringing down the intake capacity of engineering institutes, the government should focus on investing in industries other than just IT. Of late, the demand for civil, mechanical and electronics engineering has reduced owing to lack of job opportunities in those sectors,” said Gopakumaran Thampi, principal of Thadomal Shahani Engineering College, Bandra.
First Published: May 18, 2019 11:20 IST