The All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) said on Friday that it will close down technical colleges which have, over the past five years, not managed to fill more than 30 per cent of the seats available. There are currently over 27 lakh vacant seats at engineer colleges across India, the Council said.

“In the past few years, the ACRE has been actively working on reducing the quantity of engineering institutions across the country due to poor demand and falling quality of education. We have also reduced the penalty for closing down an engineering institution that was a deterrent for many colleges which were willing to shut amid poor demand,” said AICTE chairman Anil D Sahasrabuddhe. He was speaking at a two-day world education summit on August 11.

Seats are available every year for more than 37 lakh students across the country at 10,361 engineering institutions. Of these, students have been admitted to only 10 lakh seats while the rest remain vacant.

Sahasrabuddhe said that the AICTE has also formulated a National Student Startup Policy to address the issue of diminishing jobs as against the number of engineering graduates.

“State-of-the-art language labs will be set up in about 220 government colleges in Rajasthan starting this academic session as in this era of globalisation knowledge of language is a necessity,” said Rajasthan Technical and Higher Education minister Kiran Maheshwari.