AICTE report says fake business schools are thriving in Delhi

20 Sep
According to data provided by the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), as many as 75 institutes in Delhi are enrolling students under technical programmes without its approval. 

And more than half of them offer degree or diploma programmes in management studies.

Maharashtra, too, shares this dubious honour. Shockingly, both states together account for 45 per cent of all the total unapproved institutes in India.

But the Capital having the same number of illegal educational institutes as the third largest state in country is definitely a bigger reason for concern. Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal have the second and third highest number of unapproved institutions, respectively.

There are close to 3,500 management institutes alone approved by the AICTE, of which 3,000 offer MBA programmes and 500 offer diplomas.

According to the Council regulations, any academic programme related to the field of architecture and town planning, management studies, engineering and information technology, pharmacy, hotel management and catering require AICTE approval.

And in the absence of the Council’s nod, the ‘degrees’ handed out by the defaulting institutes are not worth the paper they are printed on.

“The degree or diploma awarded by such institutes does not hold any value in the job market, especially if the student wishes to seek employment in the government sector,” said M. K. Hada, head of the approval department of the Council.

The Council can do little other than give wide publicity to the fact that such institutes are not approved by it. It uploads the names of such institutes on its official website, and issues newspaper advertisements from time to time. The names of all the 348 unapproved institutes are available on www. aicte- india. org . Action against erring institutes has to be taken by the respective state administrations. In a reply to a Parliament question given by the ministry of human resource development in the Lok Sabha earlier this month, the state and UNION territory governments have been advised from time to time to issue necessary instructions to the district administration or police to take action against such institutes.

The last such communication was issued by the ministry on May 2 this year.

The ministry had also issued a public appeal to students, advising them to take necessary steps to ensure that their institutes are recognised under the law and offer courses of quality and repute.

Despite this, many of the illegal institutions continue to thrive and enroll students as a spot check by this paper revealed. Prospective students are lured with glossy brochures that boast big corporations as recruiters.

Most operate from small campuses lodged in corner of a residential colony or a busy market. Questions on AICTE approval are dodged with the excuse that the institutes offer degrees through a tie-up with either state or central universities recognised by the University Grants Commission (UGC).

“We have noticed that it’s with such claims that these institutes manage to lure in students. But this is a lie. A UGC or AICTE approved university can only offer technical programmes for its own students and not extend this approval to other private institutes.

But we have noticed this is one of the popular methods used by small private institutes to enroll students and make them believe that their courses are legitimate,” S. S. Mantha, chairman, AICTE said.

The K. R. Mangalam Global Institute of Management in Greater Kailash, for instance, informed this reporter (posing as an MBA aspirant) that their MBA degree did not require AICTE approval as it was offered by Mysore University, which is UGC recognised. Similarly, the FOSTIIMA Business School in South Extension, a five- year- old institute that boasts being set up by seven alumni of IIM Ahmedabad, also said its MBA degree was legal as it was offered through a tieup with Pondicherry University.

The gimmick obviously works.

The students at these institutes that MAIL TODAY interacted with had no idea whether the programmes they were enrolled in were approved by the AICTE or not. But the Council pleads helplessness as far as youngsters falling into the trap of such institutes are concerned.

“We do everything we can as far as giving publicity to the list of unapproved institutes is concerned. Even if the institute does not give them information, students should visit our website as all the information is also uploaded there,” said a senior AICTE official, who did not wish to be identified.

Mantha, however, said that the Council is currently also trying to come up with alternative ways to counter this problem.


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