BHUBANESWAR: With vacancy in private professional colleges of the State shooting to a staggering 60 per cent, the Odisha Private Engineering Colleges Association (OPECA) has urged the State Government to allow admission to more students from outside states by revising the existing reservation system.
Currently, fifteen per cent students from outside states are allowed through JEE (Main) for admission into professional colleges of Odisha. But with demand for engineering and other professional courses dropping, the umbrella body has requested Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to raise the quota to 40 per cent.
Last year, just about 16,000 students took admission into the professional colleges as against the total seat strength of 48,687. This included the 3,700 seats in eight Government colleges.
With the admission season drawing near, the OPECA has called for an amendment in Odisha Professional Education Act 2007 so that private colleges can get more candidates. Two high power committees studied the Act and submitted their recommendations which are yet to be implemented, it said.
In a memorandum to the Chief Minister, the association said, a major reason behind the high vacancy is the low churn-out of Plus Two Science pass-outs in the State. The total number of students in Plus Two Science has not increased beyond 55 percent in last 14 years whereas engineering seats have gone up by more than 10 times, it added.
“Though students from Jharkhand, Bihar, Chhattisgarh and North East states come to Odisha every year for technical education, the low seat reservation debars them from taking admission whereas poor economic condition of Odia students stops them from enrolling,” it added.
Since the last six years, colleges have been reporting vacancy but the seats are not handed over to the institutions to be filled although the Act is silent on this point, honorary secretary of OPECA Binod Dash said. “Increasing the outside State quota to 40 per cent will not affect prospects of Odia students since 50 per cent seats will be reserved for them,” he added.
The association has also demanded that all seats falling vacant after second round of counselling be handed over to colleges for admission from JEE (Main), Odisha JEE and JEE of other states.