Move to let managements fill merit seats put student in difficulty

Hundreds of students seeking admission to BAMS and BSMS degree courses are in a tight spot following the State government decision to allow self-financing Ayurveda colleges to fill the vacant seats on their own rather than through the spot admission system followed in the previous years.

In a controversial move, the Health and Family Welfare Department included a clause in the terms and conditions of an agreement entered with the Kerala State Indian Systems of Medicine Self-Financing College Management Association (KISMA) letting the managements fill the remaining merit seats after the third and final allotment.

Rework terms

When contacted, Health Secretary K. Elangovan said the Health and Family Welfare Department had asked the government to rework the terms and conditions after complaints surfaced about the new admission procedure. The self-financing colleges were asked not to fill the vacant merit seats till a final decision was taken, he said.

However, parents are of the opinion that the government was not serious in its effort. There was limited time left to revise the terms and conditions – the admission process had to be completed by the end of this month, said a parent.

Clause (3) of the terms and conditions says “three allotments shall be made by the Commissioner of Entrance Examination to the management concerned. The management concerned shall be entitled to fill those seats still remaining unfilled after third and final allotment. The Government shall not have any claim over such seats above deadline and the fortified vacancy shall not be brought forward to succeeding year for compensation.”

In the current year, the admissions to Ayurveda courses started ahead of the admissions to MBBS and BDS courses. Many students who got enrolled for Ayurveda courses left their seats when they got MBBS and BDS seats. As per the agreement, colleges affiliated to the KISMA can stake claim to the vacant merit seats.

Call for spot admission

An official with the Directorate of Ayurveda Medical Education told The Hindu that there were more than 200 vacancies in 13 colleges affiliated to the KISMA. The decision of the government, he said, worked in favour of the managements as they would be able to collect exorbitant fees.

A parent of a student trying to get admission in a self-financing college said “the management asked me to pay Rs.2.25 lakh as annual tuition fee.

If the earlier policy was followed, my daughter would have got admission in the merit category itself.”

The decision has not gone down well with the Directorate of Ayurveda Medical Education. In a letter to the Principal Secretary, Health and Family Welfare Department, Director of Ayurveda Medical Education T. Sivadas said the decision to part with the seats would adversely affect the prospects of meritorious candidates.

In the letter dated August 4, a copy of which was obtained by the parent through Right to Information Act, Mr. Sivadas said the decision had generated an adverse public opinion about he government.

He said he was compelled to write as he was not given an opportunity to participate in the discussions with the management.

He urged the government to take immediate steps to fill the seats under government quota in self-financing colleges through spot admission.

  • Government to rework agreement with self-financing college managements

  • Health Secretary says managements have been asked not to fill vacant seats