Responding to the request of the Faculty Federation and Alumni Associations of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) to intervene on the proposed Common Entrance Test (CET) issue, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will now meet them at 4 pm on Thursday.
The meeting is taking place after the revolt against the proposed CET by the Union Human Resource Development (HRD) ministry by IIT-Kanpur professors who sought “direct and immediate intervention” of PM to settle the issue.
A letter was earlier written to the PM by a group of professors, known as the Faculty Forum.
Pointing out that in matters like this the Academic Senate was supreme, Prime Minister was urged to intervene and postpone the contentious changes in the format of the Joint Entrance Examiantion (JEE)-2013.
Any “unnecessary meddling” with the current format of entrance exams could seriously jeopardise the prestige and standing of the IITs “respected across the world”, the faculty members said and have cautioned that such steps would also bring the ministry and academicians on the brink of an unsavoury face-off.
The Faculty Forum has opined that by doing away with the AIEEE, NIT, IIT-JEE and changing the exam format to a single CET, engineering aspirants would be burdened with pressure and tension.
Urging the Prime Minister to use his “good offices” to thrash out the contentious issue at the earliest, IIT-Kanpur has also asked the prime minister to order cancellation of the proposed CET format that the HRD ministry is likely to implement.
The IIT-Kanpur virtually revolted against the HRD ministry’s move for a common entrance test and announced that it would hold its own entrance test from 2013.
Soon after Kanpur raised the banner of revolt, IIT Delhi and IIT Bombay also dropped enough hints that they too would go the Kanpur way. There is a growing sentiment against the CET proposal, many in the IIT faculty feel.
The IIT-Kanpur is upset with the ministry’s decision to merge IIT Joint Entrance Exam (IIT-JEE) with the All India Engineering Entrance Examination (AIEEE) and the 210-member senate of IIT-Kanpur has passed a resolution rejecting the new format.
In a resolution moved and voted by the senate, it was said that the recent “IIT Council proposal on admissions to IITs is academically and methodically unsound and in violation of the Institutes of Technology Act (1961) and IIT Kanpur Ordinances (Ordinance 3.2 (Admissions).”