CU panel mulls hike in tech seat count

Calcutta University's engineering admission committee will meet next month to decide whether the number of seats in the four-year BTech programme needs to be raised by 15 per cent in the next academic session, an official said.

By Subhankar Chowdhury
  • Published 27.10.17
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College Street: Calcutta University's engineering admission committee will meet next month to decide whether the number of seats in the four-year BTech programme needs to be raised by 15 per cent in the next academic session, an official said.

The university had introduced the four-year BTech programme in 2015, before which the course duration was three years.

The four-year course, which takes in students through the state joint entrance examinations, started with half of the 300 seats in the three-year programme. The older course continued with the other half.

In 2016 the seat count was raised to 165. This year the number remained the same.

"The engineering admission committee will meet next month to decide whether the number of seats can be raised to 70 per cent of the pre-2015 seat count of the three-year programme in the academic session beginning in 2018. The decision has to be finalised before the JEE board issues a notification for next year's entrance exam," a university source said.

Asked about the proposed increase in the number of seats, the dean of engineering, Amlan Chakraborty, declined to comment.

Vice-chancellor Chakravorty Banerjee said: "We have not yet got any proposal from the dean of technology, so can't comment on the issue."

If the proposal of a 70 per cent rise is approved, the four-year course will have 210 seats.

The admission committee will assess whether the university will be able to create infrastructure such as laboratories, workshops and workstations for 210 seats.

Around Rs 12 crore is being spent on upgrading the infrastructure. "Progress of work is not satisfactory. We have discussed the projects with a full-term engineer the university had appointed last month," an official said.

The facilities are being developed on the technology campus of the university in Salt Lake.

Eight departments currently offer BTech degrees - computer science and engineering, information technology, radio physics and electronics, chemical engineering, chemical technology, polymer science and technology, applied physics. and applied optics and photonics.

Another factor coming in the way of increasing the number of seats is the lack of enough full-term teachers. For the past three years the university has been relying on guest teachers to make up for the shortfall.

"Recruitment of full-term teachers was stuck over the past several years. The process started after Sonali Chakrvorti Banerjee took charge as full-term vice-chancellor in August. We are not sure whether we will have adequate number teachers for 210 students before the next academic session starts," a professor of computer science said.

The three-year BTech programme will be scrapped in 2018. The final batch, which took admission in 2015, will graduate next year.