New rules for approval of engineering colleges ‘from next year'

The Madras High Court on Wednesday said applications of engineering colleges, for extension of approval/additional intake/introduction of new courses/variation intake, on or before August 31 last year, would be governed by the AICTE Regulations, 2006.

August 31 was the last date for filing of applications as per the 2006 regulations. Approval should be granted accordingly for the academic year 2010-11.

However, approval for the next academic year would be governed by the new regulations of 2010, the court said.

Disposing of a set of writ petitions, Justice V. Dhanapalan said applications of colleges which opted for new regulations should be approved as per the new regulations.

While one batch of petitions challenged the new regulations, another batch was filed by colleges which had complied with the regulations. The Judge said the new regulations would have only prospective effect.

Mr. Justice Dhanapalan upheld the AICTE (Grant of Approval for Technical Institutions) Regulations 2010, except for one clause: Regulation 11.1 which contemplated civil and criminal action against institutions, which he held was ultra vires of the AICTE Act 1987 and without authority of law. Therefore, it was being struck down, the Judge said. The Judge observed, “In its future endeavour, the AICTE shall take policy decisions based on ground realities after undertaking survey in the various fields of technical education, collecting data on all related matters and making forecast of the needed growth and development in the technical education, for which purpose it should consult with the stakeholders, i.e., the academicians, colleges and other experts in the field, as contemplated under Section 10 (a) of the Act, affording an opportunity to the institutions concerned.”