Just after 5 months of announcement of new IITs by the NDA government in Jammu and Kashmir, Chhattisgarh, Goa, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala, the HRD ministry has convened a meeting of state government officials and existing IIT directors to fast track the new institutions.
Meanwhile, IITs and NITs are working together on a new software that will make possible common counselling.
Sources said while Andhra Pradesh has located a site in Tirupati and a site selection committee has approved it, other states have been a bit slow. Kerala has also finalized a site. In case of Chhattisgarh, final decision has to be made if the IIT will come up in New Raipur or some other site. Goa had found a site, but it was found smaller for an IIT. The state government has been asked by the ministry to look for a bigger site. The J&K government has asked district magistrate of Jammu to locate a site. An area of 100 acres is required for an IIT and the land needs to be free of all liabilities.
As for common counselling, the HRD ministry has to submit affidavit in the Delhi High Court on November 30. On August 1, the HC had directed the ministry to set up a technical committee for regular sittings/consultations to sort out the process of common counseling for NITs and IITs so that it can be implemented from 2015-16. HC had asked the HRD ministry and IITs to consider whether the reserved category seats in the IITs, if unfilled, can be transferred to the general category. The ministry was also asked to find out if there exists any provision for lateral entry into IITs in the second year.
HC had asked petitioner Rajeev Kumar to make suggestions on common counseling to the ministry. In a detailed note, Kumar has suggested that a Common Board for Admission to IIT and NITs be constituted and it should maintain a web-portal as a single interface with the candidates for admissions to IITs and NITs. Kumar has suggested that candidates who qualify in JEE (advanced) and are given ranks that make them eligible for admission in IITs must be automatically registered by the common board.
Candidates, Kumar suggested, will submit common preference list of their choices through the web-portal maintained by the common board. Seats will be allotted by the common board as per the admission norms of IITs and NITs.