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Private engineering colleges in Bengal can’t take their affiliation to the West Bengal University of Technology for granted. The state government may cancel the affiliation if any of these colleges lacks the minimum infrastructure or teaching faculty, or makes any gross departure from the promise they make to students about placements. From now, affiliation to private engineering colleges will be granted on a yearly basis following inspection by expert teams. The higher education department is planning to send inspection teams to these colleges every year. The affiliation is linked to adherence to the guidelines. Colleges run the risk of losing their affiliation if the inspection report points to any irregularity or non-conformity with the laid down norms, a higher education department official said.
The state government hardened its stand as complaints of irregularities and non-performance in many private engineering colleges kept pouring in the department. It is important to keep them under constant monitoring. Complaints keep coming against them at regular intervals. It is time to sit up and take note, the higher education official said. While counseling for engineering admission was going on, two colleges sought the states approval to take students. Both of these colleges are recognized by the All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE).On getting the letter, education minister Bratya Basu wanted an expert team to visit the colleges and submit a report before granting permission. The reports went against the colleges. The government thus declined the request. We do not want such unfit engineering colleges to continue duping the students, the official said. This, however, is not the sole incident. According to sources, expert teams conducted visits to other engineering colleges as well. In a few of them, the reports were a matter of concern. We had warned them to take improving measures within two months. The deadline made things move and these colleges indeed upgraded the infrastructure and addressed those areas which were deprived. It was an eye-opener for us, said the senior higher education department official. According to plan, surprise visits will continue round the year, irrespective of complaints against colleges. We shall have to look into the rules and regulations. Those who fail to meet the specified norms will be given time to improve. However, repeated defaulters will be handled seriously that might mean de-affiliation by the state government or complaint to the AICTE which can lead to derecognition, the official said. Each college will have to show adequate infrastructure, adherence to rules and regulations and reports substantiating their placement claims as and when the inspection team pays a visit. If such visits, every year to colleges, become mandatory and the private engineering colleges become unanswerable, then it will be a boon for students. Else, once they receive affiliation, many of these colleges hardly care to adhere to the rules and regulations. Even the West Bengal University of Technology, the affiliating university, does not have the power to take such colleges to task, said a senior WBUT official.
Courtesy: Times of India
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