Private companies can open tech institutes in non-profit avatar

The HRD ministry has given a go-ahead to key reforms in technical education

jasleen

Jasleen Kaur | December 30, 2010



Private players may now open technical institutions of learning, but only if these are run as non-profit organisations.

After a meeting with the higer education and technical education council, the HRD minister Kapil Sibal said that private companies are will have to register as non profit entities for setting up technical institutions. This will be done under section 25 of Company’s Act 1956. However, no joint ventures will be entertained, he clarified.

Also for 241 districts, where currently no AICTE institution exist, such centres of learning could be set up through public-private partnership on a build-operate-transfer can start technical institutions.

Sibal said the objective behind this step is to ensure a mechanism that can be used for setting up All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) approved institutions.

AICTE has also changed the norms for land requirement for setting up a technical institute. For a rural area the land requirement is 10 acres and for urban areas it is 2.5 acres. The number of seats in technical education institutions have also been increased from 40 per class to 60 per class. This for optimisation of resources without having to set up new institutions in the area.

Also, institutes will now have to mandatorily provide 5% supernumerary seats for students from economically backward category under AICTE’s tuition fee waiver scheme.

The new policy will also allow B.Sc students to take admission to second year lateral entry into a degree program.  Simillarly, students of class XII vocational / technical of the state boards can take direct admission to second year lateral entry of a diploma program.

The minister said, "These are the incentives given for expansion because the demand is huge and the supply is less. These steps will help in reducing pressure from the students and institutes.”

Under social responsibility, evening courses for skill development that are based on the expertise areas possessed by the respective institutions in the areas of engineering / technology / architecture etc are allowed. This will facilitate the community around the institutions to benefit by acquiring the skills provided by these Institutes. These institutions can even form clusters with others in the neighbourhood and collaborate with the industries in the area in running these skill based programs.

Further, the council has will allow a single campus to integrate more than one programme like engineering/architecture/pharmacy/management/hotel management, which means a single campus can have more than one college for a particular programme.

Overseas campus can be setup and Indian degrees can also be given in campuses of Indian institutions abroad, subject to local laws.

This is the second step to bring change in the existing system in technical education. The ministry had introduced e-governance in the council, earlier this year, for making the system transparent and self disclosure.

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