CHENNAI: With over 4 lakh youngsters applying to government arts and science colleges in the State, academicians have flagged the need for better infrastructure. Tamil Nadu’s 163 government colleges have just 1.20 lakh seats.
This year, a record 4,07,045 people signed up for the Tamil Nadu Government Arts and Science College Admissions (TNGASA), as per data from the Directorate of Collegiate Education (DCE). But only 2,98,056 of them paid the fees before registrations concluded on Wednesday, and hence, only their applications will be processed, DCE officials said.
Last year, TNGASA received 2.29 lakh applications. Academics say it will be tough to accommodate all students in government colleges this year. As for why the demand has shot up, they cite pandemic- induced financial crises and the low fees at government colleges.
Besides, the ever-rising number of students passing Class 12, coupled with a declining interest in engineering, has pushed up the demand for arts and science colleges. “The pandemic has made people realise the value of government colleges.
More people are applying due to the low fees and good faculty,” says T Veeramani, president of the TN Government Collegiate Teachers’ Association, adding that the government should recruit teachers and build more classrooms on a priority basis.
“Over 7,000 teacher post are vacant in colleges, and infrastructure too must be upgraded to cater to the rising demand,” says P Vaijayanthi, faculty at a government college.
Will increase seats based on need: DCE
DCE officials say the number of seats in government colleges has increased by 20-25 per cent each year. “If a greater increase is needed, it will be done,” says a DCE official