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OJEE to end from 2014

Bhubaneswar, Dec. 10: Odisha has decided to join the common national examination process for undergraduate engineering courses from 2014.

The state had earlier embraced the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET), a common all-India exam for medical admissions.

Secretary of the employment and technical education and training (ETET) department Chandra Sekhar Kumar said the state would not conduct the Odisha Joint Entrance Examination (OJEE) from 2014.

“However, we will hold the OJEE next year in May. Thereafter, we will be part of the all-India engineering exams,” Kumar said.

The OJEE covered admissions into 101 engineering colleges across the state. The decision to adopt the all-India engineering exam has not gone down well with aspirants as it was easier for them to clear OJEE.

This year, nearly 90 per cent of the engineering seats were allotted to students scoring below 40 per cent marks in state-level exam.

However, officials of the ETET department put forth certain conditions before the department of higher education under the Union ministry of human resource development to be part of the national engineering test.

The conditions include publishing a separate merit list for state candidates and filling up of 15 per cent seats through the state admission agency.

Department officials said a separate merit list for state candidates should be generated and provided to the state government. The counselling for such state candidates shall be done by the state admission agency following reservation policy and provisions prescribed in the Odisha Professional Education Institutions (Regulation of Admission and Fixation of Fee) Act, 2007.

Besides, at least 15 per cent seats of the approved intake of all the private institutions, including autonomous and private state universities, should be filled up on merit basis from the general and all-India merit list through the state admission agency, the letter said.

Not less than 50 per cent seats of the deemed universities in the state shall be filled up through the merit list generated for domiciled candidates through counselling conducted by the state government. The remaining seats of the deemed universities shall be filled up through central counselling conducted by the CBSE at the all-India level.

Counselling at institution level would not be allowed to ensure that the admission procedure is fair, transparent, merit-based and non- exploitative.