Special Correspondent

No centralised counselling, SWS for management seats: Court

Consensus reached by Government and consortium of private engineering colleges formalised Non-minority unaided engineering colleges should follow reservation rule for management seats admission Quota rule not applicable to minority unaided institutions

CHENNAI: Formalising the consensus reached by the Government and the consortium of private engineering colleges, the Madras High Court on Thursday ruled that centralised counselling and single window system of admission need not be followed for management quota seats.

While the rule of reservation shall be followed in admission to the management seats retained by non-minority unaided engineering colleges, after setting apart 15 per cent quota of seats to NRI, the quota rule would not be applicable to minority unaided institutions.

Members of the Consortium of Self-Financing Professional Arts and Science Colleges in Tamil Nadu can allot seats on the basis of marks obtained in the common entrance test conducted by the consortium itself or the Anna University or the All India Engineering Entrance Examination or any Government agency of other States.

A comprehensive order to this effect was passed by Justice K. Ravirajapandian, who described the education-related litigations as an "annual phenomenon."

The matter relates to petitions filed by the Consortium and the Association of Minority Unaided Christian Institutions challenging the Permanent Committee order directing them to admit students through SWS and follow the rule of reservation.

Two others the All India Medical and Engineering Colleges Association president T.D. Naidu, and advocate G. Rajendran too had preferred petitions seeking to implead themselves as parties to the proceedings.

In his order, the Judge also modified a Permanent Committee ruling that the Consortium could conduct its CET only in Kerala and Andhra Pradesh. He said the restriction was "unwarranted and uncalled for" and gave liberty to the Consortium to conduct examination in other States as well.

He, however, ruled that the Committee had power to fix a timeframe for the institutions to exercise their option to adopt one of the CETs conducted by various sources for admissions. "It cannot be assailed as encroaching upon the autonomy guaranteed by the Supreme Court." The Judge then directed the Consortium members to conduct their CET within a period of 10 days from July 6 "as everything has now come to a streamline."

He also recorded an undertaking by counsel for the AIMECA, that the forum would go along with the mainstream and that the judgment would be applicable to the AIMECA as well.

After placing on record his appreciation for Advocate-General R. Viduthalai and senior counsel R. Krishnamurthy and N.R.Chandran, the Judge said it was high time an appropriate legislation "comprehensive enough to cater to the legitimate aspirations of all concerned and concomitant with the law laid down by the Supreme Court" was enacted.