Plan to add 1,000 IIT seats, but institutes say there is no room | education$higher studies | Hindustan Times
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Plan to add 1,000 IIT seats, but institutes say there is no room

The Joint Admission Board (JAB) has proposed an additional 1,000 seats in IITs, though several IITs doubt existing campuses can accommodate more students.

education Updated: Jan 23, 2018 20:59 IST
Shreya Bhandary
The Joint Admission Board (JAB) has proposed an additional 1,000 seats in IITs and a 14% supernumerary increase in admission for women, though several IITs doubt existing campuses can accommodate more students.
The Joint Admission Board (JAB) has proposed an additional 1,000 seats in IITs and a 14% supernumerary increase in admission for women, though several IITs doubt existing campuses can accommodate more students.(HT file)

The Joint Admission Board (JAB) has proposed an additional 1,000 seats in IITs and a 14% supernumerary increase in admission for women, though several IITs doubt existing campuses can accommodate more students.

The IITs fear that enrolling more students will strain their infrastructure.

“Before increasing the intake capacity, we need to make sure that we have enough space to accommodate all students, which is our priority. We don’t want to overburden our classrooms and hostel rooms,” said Sudhir Jain, the director of IIT-Gandhinagar, one of the newer institutes.

Last year, IIT-Bombay started a new undergraduate course and increased their intake by 30 seats, but the institute has no such plans for the upcoming academic year.

The institute has a sprawling campus with 16 hostels and another two on the cards. It has 10,400 students, though there is accommodation for 8,000.

“One of the new hostels with 1,100 rooms should be ready by mid-2019 and another building should come up in two years,” said Devang Khakhar, the director of IIT-Bombay.

The institute might start a new course, though there is no confirmation as yet.

“There’ll be no increase in the intake capacity of IIT-Goa and IIT-Dharwad (centres mentored by IIT-Bombay) as well,” Khakhar said.

Officials at IIT-Madras are hoping to start work on a new hostel building by March in order to accommodate more students.

“Without making space for students, we cannot increase our intake capacity,” said Jagadeesh Kumar, the dean of academics at IIT-Madras.

The institute is already saddled with double occupancy in rooms meant for single students in hostels.

The growing number of vacant seats in IITs has also been a point of worry. As many as 121 seats were not taken after seven rounds of counseling across 23 IITs in 2017, up from 96 in 2016 and 50 in 2015. Consequently, the Union HRD ministry asked IITs to consider various ways, including the option of scrapping unpopular courses, to address the situation.

“While the JAB has been inching towards increasing the intake capacity, most of the burden will have to be shared by the newer IITs and they are already struggling to provide accommodation, laboratories and classrooms to students,” said a senior faculty of IIT-Delhi, who doesn’t want to be named.

Facts
  • *Total intake capacity across 22 Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) and Indian School of Mines (ISM) Dhanbad stood at 10,988 in 2017-18 academic cycle.
  • *More seats for female candidates: A meeting of the Joint Admission Board (JAB) held in June 2017 concluded with the decision to admit more than 1,400 women at the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) from 2018-19. The move was aimed at rectifying the gender disparity in these institutes.
  • It was recommended to increase 600 seats—a hike of 14%—in the number of seats allotted to women, taking the total quota to 1,440 seats. The quota increase will be from the ‘supernumerary’ or excess seats, and can vary from one IIT to another. JAB also made it clear that the increase in seats will not affect the existing number of seats for male candidates.
  • The committee also recommended awarding merit scholarships, regardless of parental income to all female students based on merit.
  • *More students eligible for JEE-Advanced- This year, the Joint Admission Board (JAB) announced that 4,000 more students will be allowed to appear for the JEE-Advanced exam in May, which means that the top 2.4 lakh candidates clearing JEE (Main) will be eligible to appear for JEE-Advanced exam. This change was introduced keeping in mind the increasing intake capacity of the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs).