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The battle between the B-Schools and the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) over issues relating to regulation of fees, admissions and governance, is far from over.
The common admission process for the PGDM 2011-13 batch, announced on Thursday by the Consortium of Management Education (COME), is largely aided by the interim orders passed by the Bombay High court on February 24 and the Supreme Court on March 17. These interim orders are effective only for one year, which means PGDM admissions for the 2012-14 batch will be subjected to the outcome of the matter that is now pending before the Supreme Court and is posted for next hearing on July 4. We expect that the final verdict of the courts will be out by September/October, which will give us a clear picture about matters relating to fees, admissions and governance vis-a-vis admissions from next year, said Apoorva Palkar, President, COME, which is a body of 52 unaided Management Institutes in the State. In December 2010, the AICTE had issued a notification laying fresh set of rules for the council-approved Technical Institutions offering Degree, Diploma and PGDM courses in the country. Some of the key features of these rules, which were to be effective from 2011-12, were: PGDM shall be of a duration not less than two years; All PGDM admissions will be done only through two nationally recognized common entrance tests, namely, Common Admission Test and Management Aptitude Test or the test conducted by the State Government (MHT-CET in case of Maharashtra); Seat allotment should be effected by the concerned State Government through its competent authority i.e., Director of Technical Education (DTE) in case of Maharashtra. Similarly, the rules provided that the fees for each PGDM course will be subjected to approval by the Supreme Court mandated Shikshan Shulka Samiti (fee fixation panel) set up by the State Government. It also provided for nomination of five invitees on behalf of the AICTE and State Government. The new rules drew considerable flak from the B-schools, which viewed the same as an encroachment on their right to conduct admissions and decide fees, thus setting off a spate of litigations in the Bombay High Court and the Supreme Court. A couple of these petitions were filed by COME and the Institute of Technology Management (ITM) in the Bombay High Court while another three petitions were filed in the Supreme Court by the Jaipuria Institute of Management; the Association of Indian Management Schools (AIMS) and the Education Promotion Society of India (EPSI). On February 24, the High Court division bench of Chief Justice Mohit Shah and Justice S. J. Vajifdar passed an interim order allowing the 52 member institutes of COME to conduct admissions of their own. The bench, however, clarified that it was not granting any interim stay on the impugned AICTE notification or a subsequent notice released on January 20 by the DTE. It also stated that the interim arrangement is only for academic year 2011-12. Meanwhile, the Supreme Court bench of justices R. V. Raveendran and A. K. Patnaik had asked the AICTE to present its position on March 15 over the pleas filed by AIMS, EPSI and Jaipuria. The matter was heard on March 17, following which, the Apex Court passed an interim order allowing the B-Schools to conduct admissions of their own. The SC ordered that the B-Schools can have two invitees, one each from AICTE and the concerned State Government, on their board, as against five mentioned in the AICTE rules. The B-Schools were given liberty to fix their fees, provided they inform the same to the AICTE. Palkar told TOI that COME has filed a special leave petition (SLP) in the Apex Court, which will be clubbed with the prevailing three petitions, for the upcoming hearing.
Courtesy: Times of India
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