All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) that is the technical education regulator in the country plans to cut nearly 600,000 engineering seats over the next few years because of the dismal quality of education across India.
Anil Sahasrabudhe, AICTE’s chairperson said,” We would like to bring it down to between 10 lakh and 11 lakh from a little over 16.7 lakh now.”
In order to stem the decline in the quality of education and address the issue of vacant seats the regulatory body would shut some schools and reduce the intake of students over the next few years.
The software industry lobby group Nasscom conducted a survey in 2011 in which it found that only 17.5% of the engineering graduates were employable.
The education assessment company, Aspiring Minds stated in a report that the employability of engineering graduates in various states range between 12% and 42%. According to the findings of the report only 18.43% of engineers are employable in software engineer-IT services roles and for jobs in mechanical, electronics/electrical and civil engineering a meagre 7.49% are employable.
There have been complaints by the leading companies in technology and other sectors about the quality of graduates from the various colleges that have mushroomed over the years. As far as employment is concerned, these companies prefer students only from top schools such as the Indian Institute of Technology (IITs), Birla Institute of Technology and Science, Pilani, National Institute of Technology (NITs) and some private institutions.
This year alone the AICTE has received 1,422 applications seeking permission to shut engineering departments or courses and as many as 556 engineering courses or departments have closed down. The reason behind this is the lack of proper infrastructure and the students not gaining any employable skills.
According to Sahasrabudhe,” The intake capacity right now seems to be much above the demand.”
He further added that,” AICTE will only facilitate the closure of engineering schools entirely or in parts to achieve the target.” According to him the engineering colleges would not be forced to shut down and the regulatory body would “ensure that the students are not at the receiving end.”