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HRD adds 95 extra seats in NITs

HRD adds 95 extra seats in NITs
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To accommodate candidates who were denied admission due to software glitch Additional seats only for the academic year 2013-14 No...

  • To accommodate candidates who were denied admission due to software glitch
  • Additional seats only for the academic year 2013-14
  • No decision yet on review of new pattern

The Union HRD Ministry has added 95 seats to the existing pool of the National Institute of Technology (NITs) for this year only to accommodate some deserving candidates who were denied admission in the B Tech programme due to a software glitch during the counselling process. These candidates were left out from seat allotment despite having higher merit than those admitted.

Sources said HRD Minister M M Pallam Raju exercised his powers to create the additional seats. The special provision is only for this academic year (2013-14). The students were not at fault as the goof-up happened because of the software programming, they said.

"These (additional) seats are purely supernumerary and temporary in nature and shall be valid only for the academic year 2013-14 as a onetime measure," the HRD ministry said in its letter to the chairman of central seat allocation board (CSAB) and NIT Rourkela director Sunil Kumar Sarangi.

The goof-up took place during the third phase of the counselling process. It happened at a time when confusion prevailed among the students over securing a seat in the NITs under the new admission procedure where 60 per cent weightage is given to JEE-Main and 40 per cent to board marks. CBSE had conducted the JEE-Main and announced a merit list of 4.5 lakh candidates. CSAB had conducted counselling on the basis of the list and allocated seats last month.

The new pattern has hit hard the aspirants from Andhra Pradesh where nearly 70 people lost chance due to faulty process. There were widespread protests in the state and two cases have already been filed in the Supreme Court.

The Chief Minister N Kirankumar Reddy, leader of the opposition and TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu were among many others who shot of letters to the central government complaining about the injustice meted out to students from Andhra Pradesh despite getting ranks in the written test. They demanded reversal to older system since normalization cannot be achieved due to large scale variations between different state Boards.

But so far, neither the IIT Board nor the CBSE made any concrete moves to address the concerns of the state government. We will take any review after the apex court’s verdict on it, a CBSE official said.

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