The All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) has issued notices to five Punjab government engineering college for allegedly hiring ineligible principals.
The AICTE, the governing body for technical education in the country, in a gazette notification on on January 6, 2016, had amended the academic background requirements for candidates to the post of principals of technical colleges. It is alleged that the five institutes have appointed principals in contravention to these rules.
Notices have been sent to Baba Hira Singh Bhattal Institute of Engineering and Technology (Sangrur), Beant College of Engineering and Technology (Gurdaspur), Institute of Management and Information Technology (Malout), Giani Zail Singh Campus College of Engineering and Technology (Bathnda) and Shaheed Bhagat Singh State Technical Campus (Ferozepur). The AICTE has warned that these colleges run the risk of having their approval stripped from them.
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Following this, the Punjab Technical University (PTU) had issued a notification that only colleges fulfilling AICTE norms will be granted affiliation for the year 2016-17.
“I was appointed before the AICTE issued the notification,” claims Dr Manoj Bali, principal, Baba Hira Singh Bhattal Institute of Engineering and Technology. He holds a Ph.D and M.Sc (Chemistry). “I have sent my reply to the AICTE.
Dr T S Sidhu, who is director of Shaheed Bhagat Singh State Technical Campus, claims that he is, in fact, eligible. “According to the AICTE, I hold a M.Sc degree when I actually hold a PhD and M.Tech (mechanical engineering). I have sent my reply and hope that the confusion is cleared soon,” he said.
Lectures in the college have long been demanding that the state government appoint principals from engineering stream alone. Speaking to The Indian Express on condition of anonymity, a lecturer said, “The fate of thousands of students is at stake in a scenario where AICTE and PTU will not allow these colleges to make admissions for 2016-17. The state governments’ technical education minister, secretary and director of technical education of the state should be questioned regarding this. Competent persons from core engineering field, even from IITs, are intentionally ignored to favour persons from applied sciences and humanities stream.”
The government has washed its hands off the controversy.
The Principal Secretary, Technical Education, MP Singh, dismissed the showcause notices sent by the AICTE. He said, “These notices are concerned with the colleges. We are not connected with it.”
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