Kerala medical-engineering admission notification after March 20; govt to decide on floating quota

College students
Representative image: iStock/lakshmiprasad S

Thiruvananthapuram: A committee, led by the Principal Secretary of Higher Education, has finalized the draft of this year's prospectus for medical-engineering admissions in Kerala. The official notification is expected to be issued after March 20.

Despite the Director of Technical Education urging the committee to abolish floating reservation, the matter has been forwarded to the state government for a decision, considering its sensitive nature.

Should the government decide to cancel floating reservation, this information will be included in the prospectus scheduled for release later this month. Even if a decision is made after the prospectus is published, it could be incorporated through an amendment order.

Officials indicated that the government is unlikely to end floating reservation during the General Elections, as this move could reduce opportunities for individuals enjoying various quotas. Additionally, the government cannot implement such changes solely for engineering courses.

The authorities are planning to conduct the Kerala Engineering Architecture Medical examination (KEAM-2024) after May 15. However, a final decision might be delayed due to other entrance tests scheduled around the same time.

The Kerala engineering exam, which will take place in online mode at several centres, including Gulf countries, will be conducted over a period of one week.

Incidentally, NEET-UG, the national-level qualifying exam for admission to MBBS and other undergraduate medical courses, is scheduled for May 5.

Understanding Floating Reservation

When the prospectus committee sought suggestions from stakeholders, the Director of Technical Education highlighted the issues created by floating reservation. Despite the recommendation to cancel this quota, the committee, in its final meeting, accepted the Principal Secretary of Higher Education's decision to refer the matter to the government.

Floating reservation could be illustrated with the following example: A candidate belonging to backward category is eligible for MBBS admission under reservation at Thiruvananthapuram Medical College and under merit at Alappuzha Medical College. If the candidate is interested in joining Thiruvananthapuram, the merit seat in Alappuzha will be transferred to Thiruvananthapuram. Meanwhile, the reservation seat in Thiruvananthapuram will be transferred to Alappuzha. Consequently, in Alappuzha, one merit seat will decrease and one reservation seat will increase and another candidate belonging to backward category will be given admission there. In other words, the total number of reservation seats in Kerala will remain the same under floating reservation.

Contrastingly, without floating reservation, a student wishing to join Thiruvananthapuram would be admitted, considering the existing seat as a merit seat, reducing one reservation seat in the state. Abolishing floating reservation would lead to a loss of several reservation seats and an increase in merit seats across the state.

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