Deepa Kurup

Technology will make it easy for students in north Karnataka this time

BANGALORE: For the first time ever, the counselling or admission process for allotment of seats to professional colleges in the State will be held simultaneously in three locations: Bangalore, Hubli and Gulbarga.

A mock admission session designed to test-run, fine tune and troubleshoot the process was conducted by the Karnataka Examinations Authority (KEA) on Monday.

The technical aspects of this process are being taken care of by BSNL and National Informatics Centre (NIC).

B. Chandrashekhar General Manager (BD) of BSNL told The Hindu that the backup was threefold. “Basically, Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) will be used to create Virtual Private Networks (VPNs), which will run with RF (Radio Frequency) backups,” he said.

The NIC backbone will function as the third option, providing linkage between the NIC district centre to the KEA.

Mr. Chandrashekar said that 2 MBPS (mega bytes per second) bandwidth — 1 MBPS each for data and video/voice signals — has been allotted to Hubli and Gulbarga, and 4 MBPS in Bangalore.

To put this figure in perspective, it is pertinent to mention that the Internet speed in a majority of home connections in usually around 512 MBPS.

In simple words, the entire seat allotment procedure will function over a network.

This means that within five seconds of any change registered in any centre, the database will be updated in all three locations.

How it works

Going by the live demonstration or testing conducted at the KEA, the system works as follows.

Two scrolls run parallel on screen one.

While one scroll shows the last rank allotted with a photo, the other runs through a list of colleges with seat availability.

For example, six rank holders flash on the screen at any given time.

Now, if the rank holder at the top of the screen chooses a seat in Hubli, then his choice is flashed at the bottom of the screen and is deleted from the scroll.

This indicates that the student has chosen a seat, and is out of the picture.

The database of colleges and seats available (category-wise) is updated that very minute.

Video footage

The second screen displays video footage from the three locations. So candidates can monitor who has chosen a seat, and then crosscheck if the first screen is being updated. KEA Special Officer S.K. Kulkarni said that there is no cause for worry because there are adequate backups and a hotline will serve as the fourth backup. “But that will be necessary only if every system fails, and that is not likely to happen,” he said.

Though the Government announced this move a few months ago, students and anxious parents are still not clear on how the process works. Mock drills are being conducted at B.V. Bhoomaraddi College of Engineering and Technology in Hubli and Dodappa Appa College of Engineering in Gulbarga.