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Is the 'IIT' loosing its charisma? The tag which has always been a prestigious honor for students, is today craving for students. The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) has around 750 seats vacant in this year’s academic session. The authorities will have to gaze through the courses that are laser aspired in order to avoid the high rate of vacant seats in the institutes. Around 13,000 students were selected through the Joint Entrance Examination, but it’s sad to know that most of the students did not even apply for the admission, and many opted to drop out after taking admission.
Some say it’s the courses at IIT that play the biggest factor behind the dropout rates. Talking to Hindustan Times, Sanjay Dande, Director of IIT Kanpur said, "The course on pulp and paper technology, for example, in the Indian school of Mines (Dhanbad) has no takers. Many reputed technological institutes are offering popular courses and are easily available, and this is cited as another major reason for the rising dropout rates." The country is suddenly flooding with several reputed technology institutes in last few years. IITs have no such option of refunding the initial fees of 40,000, that’s the biggest reason that students don’t even bother to inform the institutes. So the seats in the records are shown filled. Dande sees the issue of filled seats as a problem of individual institutes rather than the Joint Admission Board authorized to conduct IIT-JEE and give admission. Rajiv Kumar of IIT-Kharagpur feels that seats should be declared vacant after a certain timeframe and should be open for admissions again. "IITs should also refund the fees deposited so that seats are not unnecessarily blocked." Around 158 seats were vacant in general category across IIT in 2008-09. In IIT-Roorkee, around 74 seats were vacant followed by 47 in IIT-Kharagpur, 16 in IIT-Gawahati, 9 in IIT-Kanpur, 8 in IIT-Bombay and 2 in IIT-Delhi in the same period. The data does not include the seats withdrawn during the mid-semester. The vacant seats at Dhanbad and IIT-BHU are also not included in the data. Looking at the situation, a second round of admission was introduced for the vacant seats for academic session 2009-10, but many are still vacant. As IITs never circulate the data regarding occupied and vacant seats, which resulted as condemnation of IIT admission policy in April by the Andhra Pradesh High Court. HC observed that around 8 percent of seats were vacant when compared to total intake of students. Though the IITs have come up with third round of admissions, the problem is still unsolved as students are opting out of the institutes regardless of the fact that they have paid the initial fees. The students who have not paid fees are not allowed to take up admissions. A student can appear twice for JEE, but they are not allowed for the second attempt if he or she has paid fee to get into the merit list in first attempt. Many students drop admission as they want to attempt for JEE to improve their rankings. But this time, the students, who had already paid fees in first attempt, were denied admission by all the IITs across the country.
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