New Delhi, Sept. 23: Thousands of students can now get into engineering college without preparing for the rigorous common entrance tests (CETs) provided they have done well in their plus-two exams.
The Supreme Court today ruled that if not enough candidates qualify through the CETs, private engineering colleges can fill the vacancies by admitting students on the basis of their plus-two marksheets. This opens the door even for students who haven’t appeared for the entrance test.
The Chennai-based All India Medical and Engineering Colleges Association had moved court seeking just such a verdict. It had pleaded that private engineering colleges in the country had been left with more than 1 lakh vacant seats for the 2005-06 academic session even after admitting successful CET candidates.
The court ruling applies “for this year alone”.
One reason why engineering colleges struggle to fill seats is that many candidates, after clearing their state’s CET, opt out if they do not get the college or subject of their choice. The court ruled that these candidates must be accommodated first ' in colleges outside their states if required ' before the rest of the vacant seats are filled through the plus-two route.
To make this possible, the court asked all the states to hand to the association, within 72 hours, a list of successful CET candidates who have opted out.
Union human resource development ministry officials, however, said the main reason that so many seats go vacant is the sprouting of substandard private engineering colleges.
Students and their guardians are aware that these colleges fail to meet the basic guidelines set by the All India Council of Technical Education, which recently scrapped thousands of seats and many courses in several institutes.
These colleges, which lack proper faculties or infrastructure, yet charge extremely high fees, an official said. The problem is most acute in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.
, where over 14,000 engineering seats went vacant in 2004-05.