AICTE to allow Corporates to set up colleges

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In a revolutionary step that may eventually allow corporatisation of professional education in India, the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) has allowed corporates registered as non-profit entities under Section 25 of the Company’s Act, 1956, to set up technical and professional colleges.

How ever the approval come with a few conditions. Firstly, Corporates may only set up their campuses through Public-Private Partnership (PPP) or Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT) models in 241 districts of the country which do not have AICTE-approved institutions at present. However joint ventures will not be allowed to set up an institution.

AICTE has also increased the number of seats in engineering and architecture disciplines from 40 to 60. The ceiling of a maximum intake of 540 students has also been removed.  According to Human Resource Development Minister, Kapil Sibal, this move will diminish the gap between demand and supply in technical education.

How ever academicians are of the view that increase in seats would not lead to a huge change in actual situation as currently there are over 2 Lakh seats vacant in the professional colleges across the country. They also opine that that the increase in number of seats may adversely affect the quality of teaching as colleges in order to not increase costs would not hire fresh faculty.