Hyderabad : The education business might be losing some of its sheen considering the dwindling number of new engineering colleges. College managements are requesting permission to down the shutters indicating that the business might have reached its saturation point.
Requests for closure by engineering college management to the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) have outnumbered those for setting up new ones.
Applications have to be filed online with the AICTE for setting up new colleges for engineering, pharmacy, management and so forth. Officials of the AICTE said that this year 17 college managements had requested for closure. Last year, the number was about 50 odd colleges in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. During the same period, the number of applications for new colleges was only about fourteen.
Dr S.K. Jena, regional officer, AICTE, South Central Region, said, “This year about 17 societies have asked for closure but last year the figure was around 50 societies and trusts.”
With the boom in engineering education, the demand and supply dynamics have tilted drastically creating much more supply than demand.
“College managements are probably feeling that the demand that they anticipated would be there for engineering is no more there. Certain trusts and societies have multiple colleges at different places so they close some of them down,” Dr Jena said.
However, those who applied for closure might not be able to down the shutters immediately since they have been unable to obtain No Objection Certificates (NOC) from the state government in wake of the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh.
Experts also say the closures are mostly in rural areas than in urban areas. On the other side, some are also closing down branches of colleges like those for management because the cap on seats has been lifted. “Closures are more in rural areas than in urban areas. In cities like Hyderabad, there is not much of a problem,” Dr Jena said. Experts say that students prefer seats in colleges near urban centres unless it is a reputed college.
The demand and supply gap is widening, and this is evident with the vacancies that even existing colleges have. AICTE has been allowing colleges to add nearly 20 to 30 per cent more seats every year waiting for the demand to be created.
(Source- Deccan chronicle)