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Engineering colleges in TN slash fee to fill up seats

Faced with the prospect of empty benches in classrooms due to the supply of BE/BTech seats far exceeding the demand this year, several self-financing engineering colleges in Tamil Nadu have begun slashing the tuition fee to woo students under the management quota.

Instead of the Rs 62,500 annual fee — fixed for management quota seats by a committee, headed by Justice N V Balasubramanian — the colleges are now willing to admit students for much less. Some are sending SMSes to mobile phone users informing them of their decision to slash the fee for students joining under the management quota. “Join BE in a college near Chennai under management quota paying just Rs 50,000 per year,” read one such SMS sent by a private college in Kancheepuram district. Other institutions were willing to admit students even for Rs 40,000 — the fee for a seat allotted under the government quota in a course recognised by the National Board for Accreditation.

On Wednesday, when the curtains came down on Tamil Nadu Engineering Admissions (2009) for government quota seats, a whopping 30,550 seats in undergraduate courses remained vacant across all streams — academic, vocational and special quota seats. As many as 1,14,102 seats were on offer in 440 colleges (including 24 government, university and aided institutions) under the government quota this year, but only 83,552 were allotted.

Private colleges now have the onerous task of filling these 30,550 “lapsed seats”, in addition to approximately 35,000 seats earmarked under the management quota, before the September 4 deadline.

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