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A collective decision of All India Council for Technical Education and Pharmacy Council of India has put a blanket ban on the setting up of new pharmacy colleges in India till 2022 as the councils received multitudinous applications for establishing new pharmacy colleges in 2019-20 academic session. The threat of facing pharmacist Flood in the coming years was the main reason to put a stop on new colleges. However, states with less than 50 pharmacy colleges are free from the ban. The ban holds ineffective at northeastern states as the number of pharmacy colleges is very less there.
PCI President, Dr. Suresh Bhojraj, commented on the issue by stating the facts about present pharmacy colleges in India. Presently, over 3000 pharmacy colleges hold up to more than 1 lakh students only at the undergraduate level. The number seems promising enough to facilitate the upcoming needs of the country in the near future and setting up of new colleges can create disbalance in the markets. He also added, due to a decline in nursing courses, many colleges have started using their buildings for pharmacy classes.
AICTE & PCI Ban Reasons
- Here are some observations and reasons quoted by the AICTE and PCI to justify the ban:
- Approx to 1400 applications were placed for the setting up of new pharmacy colleges in 2019-20 academic session.
- 842 applications got approved, which increased the number of pharmacy colleges in Uttar Pradesh and the total became 541.
- In previous years, Setting up of abundant Engineering colleges in the country caused extreme flooding in the field.
- Issues related to manpower vs job can be avoided by putting a ban to setting up of new colleges.
AICTE & PCI Records of New Colleges
The following table shows the records of new colleges proposals received by the councils in the last three years, have a look at it:
Number of Colleges
Statements from senior officials have stated that the implementation of the ban on the establishment of the Pharmacy colleges and institutions in India is a wise decision with regards to the quality of education being offered to the students in the pharmacy colleges of India. Officials said that the number of job openings especially in the government sector is limited. They further added that the current need of the hour is to work on the infrastructure as well as the manpower need to impart knowledge to aspiring candidates.
The circular also stated that currently, India is home to 1,985 D.Pharm Colleges, meanwhile, there are 1,439 colleges in India that offer B.Pharm courses. With almost 2.2 lakh students taking admissions in these pharmacy colleges in India, it is a big question mark as to the employment opportunities available in the country for such graduates.
It is better to invest in improving the curriculum of present pharmacy colleges instead of setting up new colleges. The joint decision of PCI and AICTE is a sensible step to avoid the unemployment of graduates after the completion of course.