While tuition fee for a government quota seat is Rs 65,000, a student on management quota has to pay Rs 1.24 lakh per annum.
Kerala Self Financing Engineering College Managements' Association has taken a decision to reduce the management quota seats fees by almost half.
This year, even before the completion of admissions, officials believe that more than 25,000 seats are sure to go vacant. Last year 18,000 seats had gone vacant.
To fill the vacant seats, association has decided to cut down the tuition fees in private engineering colleges.
"It has come to our notice that many so-called reputed engineering colleges in Kerala are resorting to unethical practices of retaining students by not returning certificates and tuition fee when they get second allotment in another college," said Federation of Association of Managements of Unaided Professional Educational Institutions in India ( FAMPEI) president, G P C Nayar.
There are 153 engineering colleges in the state, of which 141 are self-financing colleges.
"Students' interest in engineering stream seems to have waned. This may be because campus placements in colleges have fallen. In majority of colleges, not even 50% seats have been filled in IT, electronics and communication, and computer science. However, civil, and mechanical engineering are still popular with almost 90% seats filled in most colleges," said higher education department joint secretary M Sherif.
We are going through a severe crisis. We started courses, appointed teachers and improved infrastructure, but there are no students. So bad is the situation that some of the colleges have reduced fee for management quota seats and brought it on a par with government quota fee," said Kerala Self Financing Engineering College Managements' Association president A Younus Kunju.