Tamil Nadu, Jan 6: As per the All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE), engineering colleges in Tamil Nadu would now be allowed to run arts and science courses on the same campus. All engineering colleges of the state come under Anna University whereas courses in arts and science colleges are governed by multiple universities including University of Madras, Madurai Kamraj University, Bharathiar University, etc. It has been stated by AICTE Chairman Anil Sahasrabudhe that the requirements of running additional courses in engineering colleges should be fulfilled separately with the exception of features like playground, canteen, parking, etc.
Separate facilities required for arts and science courses
Engineering institutions in the state have welcomed this decision. Authorities of these institutions believe that this would surely help in utilising resources that are currently under-utilised due to the decline in admissions in certain streams of engineering. Engineering colleges, in general, have better infrastructural facilities (classrooms, laboratories, etc.) as well as more professionally qualified teachers as compared to non-engineering institutions. This puts them in a position of advantage in order to start traditional bachelors and masters courses (B.Sc or M.Sc) across all streams of science. Engineering colleges were allowed to run such courses under Computer Science and Information Technology Bill up till 2002.
The Council Chairman was of the view that it would not be possible to start new courses in the upcoming session, 2019-20 as very little time is left for the formal process to be completed. The engineering colleges interested in starting arts and science courses on their campus had to apply to the Directorate of Collegiate Education of the state to get formal government permission before December 31.
Non-engineering institutions express displeasure over the decision
In the meantime, the Association of Self Financing Arts, Science and Management Colleges of Tamil Nadu have expressed their views against the decision. Association President Ajeet Kumar Lal Mohan has stated that the AICTE has gone beyond its powers by making a decision regarding arts and science courses as the council specifically governs technical and professional education.