1,190 more seats allowed in 12 private engineering colleges

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Special Correspondent

They have been permitted to increase the intake from this academic year

The State Government was against increasing seats VTU had rejected a plea made by private engineering college managements An expert committee of AICTE supported the request

BANGALORE: The Cabinet Sub-committee on Higher Education headed by Deputy Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa has allowed 12 private engineering colleges to increase their intake of students by 1,190 from the 2006-07 academic year.

All these seats fall under the purview of the Consortium of Medical, Engineering and Dental Colleges of Karnataka (COMED-K). The committee has increased the intake for three courses Electronics and Communication, Information Technology and Computer Science.

Addressing presspersons here on Thursday, Minister for Law and Parliamentary Affairs Basavaraj S. Horatti said Visvesvaraya Technological University (VTU) had rejected the plea made by private engineering college managements to increase seats on the ground that they lacked infrastructure and were short of teaching and other staff. But an expert committee of All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) had supported the request, he said.

The panel went ahead with the clearance only to protect the interests of students. Otherwise, students from other States would have taken advantage of the situation and secured jobs in the State, Mr. Horatti said.

The colleges that have been allowed to increase the intake of students are R.L. Jalappa College of Engineering, Bangalore (180 seats); Acharya Institute of Technology, Bangalore (120); New Horizon College of Engineering, Bangalore (90); Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Technology, Bangalore (30 ); Sri Siddartha Institute of Technology, Tumkur (30); Jawaharlal Nehru National College of Engineering, Shimoga (140); Vidyavardhaka College of Engineering, Mysore (150); St. Joseph's College of Engineering, Mangalore (120); Adichunchanagiri Institute of Technology, Chikmagalur (70); GSS Institute of Technology, Mysore (60 ); JSS Academy of Technical Education, Bangalore (160); and Venkateshwara College of Engineering, Bangalore (40).

Mr. Horatti said the State Government was against increasing seats in private engineering colleges. But the Centre had issued guidelines stating that State governments should follow AICTE rules and recommendations.

The Minister said he had written to Union Human Resource Development Minister Arjun Singh saying that the State should be given powers in matters related to sanctioning of medical, engineering and dental colleges and increasing seats for professional courses.

The issue would be discussed in the next Cabinet meeting, Mr. Horatti said.

The panel had discussed a proposal to increase the seats in nursing courses.

But the committee did not take any decision since there was no accurate information about the number of seats and courses offered in colleges, Mr. Horatti said.

Besides Mr. Yediyurappa, Minister for Higher Education D.H. Shankaramurthy, Minister for Medical Education V.S. Acharya and Minister for Transport N. Cheluvarayaswamy participated in the meeting.

The increase in seats will add to the available 30,000 engineering seats under COMED-K. The consortium's executive secretary, S. Kumar, said that the Under Graduate Entrance Test would be conducted according to the schedule on May 28.

The exact number of engineering seats available in the colleges attached to the consortium would be worked out in a day or two, after taking into account the additions and deletions in intake made recently by AICTE, Dr. Kumar told The Hindu .

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