Thursday, November 23, 2017
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For First Time, IITs To Allow Day Students, Will Open Up More Seats

NEW DELHI: Worried about a continuing trend of students dropping out citing pressure, Indian Institutes of Technology or IITs will introduce a five-week-long induction programme to welcome new students and ease them into the rigours of study at the premier engineering institutes.

The IITs will also relax hostel rules and will allow students to live at home and attend classes. This will allow them to increase the number of students they offer admission to from about 70,000 now to a lakh a year in a phased manner in the next three years.

This was decided at a six-hour meeting that union Education Minister Prakash Javadekar held with directors and chairpersons of all the country's 19 IITs on Tuesday.

The IITs are also worried that they will have to subsidise the interest-free loans that the government plans to offer to students after a hike was announced in fees from this academic year, and said would not like to pay the interest on these loans. The minister said he would consider their request.

The minister assured the IITs that the Higher Education Funding Agency, to be reviewed by the union cabinet tomorrow, will help in funding the institutes. The government told IITs that his corpus would serve as a loan giving agency for IITs to take loans for all their expenses but that the institutes would have to be self-funding by 2030.

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"The meeting was very fruitful. We want to achieve PM Modi's dream of no one going abroad," Mr Javadekar said.

The agency was announced by the government in its Budget this year. The government proposes to set it up with an initial capital base of Rs. 1,000 crore and it will leverage funds from the market and work to create infrastructure in top institutions like the IITs.

"It was a good beginning and a big change... he was willing to listen to us," said one IIT director on the new minister, with whose predecessor Smriti Irani the institutes had regular run-ins.

Courtesy: NDTV

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