25 per cent increase in university seats will take years, say officials

There can only be a 10-15 per cent rise this year, officials in the Union Human Resource Development Ministry said.

Published: 17th January 2019 05:08 AM  |   Last Updated: 17th January 2019 05:22 AM   |  A+A-

Union minister Prakash Javadekar. (File Photo | PTI)

Express News Service

NEW DELHI: A day after Union Human Resource Development Minister Prakash Javadekar said the number of seats in higher educational institutions would be increased by 25 per cent — to implement the new 10 per cent quota for the economically weaker sections (EWS) — sources in the government conceded that this would only be introduced in a phased manner.

There can only be a 10-15 per cent rise this year, officials in the Ministry said. Javadekar had announced that the new reservation policy would be applicable from the upcoming academic session.

“The minister didn’t specify that the entire increase in seats would be implemented in the first year itself. Moreover, provisions for additional infrastructure and faculty cannot be made in a jiffy,” a senior official told this newspaper.

“Increasing the number of seats at Central universities and Centrally-funded technical institutes by even 10-15 per cent won’t be easy, let alone trying this at state universities.”

Another official in the Higher Education Department recalled how implementing the OBC quota had led to “quite some chaos for several years”. The situation will take three-four years to stabilise, he added.

The Centre recently prompted an amendment to the Constitution, paving the way for 10 per cent reservation for people from EWS in jobs and educational institutes.

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