Representational image of college students in India
Representational image of college students in India | Photo: Manisha Mondal | ThePrint
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New Delhi: Expensive and flashy prospectus providing misleading information to students can now land technical institutions in trouble.

With the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) revising its rules, technical institutions including management, engineering and others now need to upload the content of their prospectus, with correct information, on their websites.

The institutes need to do this on a mandatory basis 60 days before the commencement of the admission schedule, according to the new rules, which also say any wrong information can invite action.

Introduced in December 2019, the rules have been revised after seven years. ThePrint has a copy of the official document listing the revised rules that will come into effect from academic session 2021-22.

The new rules say if a student complains against an institution for providing wrong information about itself on its prospectus, or on the website, regarding courses or process of admission, the institution will be liable to action taken by the AICTE.

The action could include withdrawal of approval granted to the institute, withholding of funds/grants, and even declaring the institution ineligible for grant of special assistance from the council.

“Every institution, shall publish or upload on its website, Prospectus, before expiry of atleast sixty days prior to the date of the commencement of the admission to any of its courses or programs of study,” AICTE’s Redressal of Grievance of Students regulations say.

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According to the revised rules, the prospectus should contain the following information — the list of programmes of study and courses offered (along with a broad outline), number of seats, eligibility, process of selection, fee (including all components), and details of faculty members (along with their type of appointment).


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Why the changes

Speaking to ThePrint, a senior AICTE official said, “This rule has been introduced because a number of private institutions, specially engineering institutions claim to be extravagant on their prospectus and in reality the students do not find what they have been promised.”

The official, who didn’t wish to be named, added, “We have received complaints regarding the same from students in the past, which is why some action was necessary.”

The rules also ask institutions to fix a reasonable price for each printed copy of the prospectus and not make a profit.

“Many private institutions make money in form of fee up to Rs 2,000 and more just by selling prospectus. Thus, a student ends up spending a huge amount of money, just choosing which institution to get admission in… We needed to put a halt to this,” the official added.

The rules also mandate that every AICTE-approved institution shall constitute a Student Grievance Redressal Committee. A provision of appointment of an ombudsperson has also been included in the rules. Any student who is not satisfied with the redressal committee can approach the ombudsperson.

There are currently close to 11,000 technical institutions that are affiliated to the AICTE. The council governs engineering, management, pharmacy, architecture and other technical institutions, both public and private.


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