Country’s toppers flock to Pilani

Special Correspondent

<TABLE width="100%" bgColor=#d0f0ff border=0><TBODY><TR><TD>In a remarkable departure from the normal run of “quotas” everywhere, BITS Pilani has its quota of toppers </TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>


A NEW RECORD: “From an average of 22 toppers in previous years, the grand total now is 30,” according to BITS Pilani Vice-Chancellor Dr. L. K. Maheshwari </CENTER>
JAIPUR: BITS Pilani, the country’s premier engineering institute, has broken its own previous record of direct admission of toppers of various school boards by admitting as many as 30 of them in the new academic year.

The toppers of the various school boards, who include 16 girls, were not required to appear for the tough, fully computerized entrance examination, BITSAT, and were also offered the disciplines of their choice.

“In the previous years the average number used to be 22 toppers getting admission in an academic year,” said the BITS Vice-Chancellor, Dr. L. K. Maheshwari, talking to this correspondent on phone on Monday, the concluding day of a two-day orientation programme for the new students at the Pilani campus in Jhunjhunu district of Rajasthan. The Vice-Chancellor met the students and their parents at the orientation programme, which included a peep into the history of the institution that started way back in 1901 as a “paathshala” and is a deemed university now.

The toppers who have got admission here now include those of Punjab, Bihar, Jammu, Chhattisgarh, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, Maharashtra, Goa, Gujarat, Assam, Manipur and Tripura besides the CBSE toppers of Chandigarh and Allahabad regions. Out of the five board toppers admitted to the Goa campus of BITS, four are girls. In all, BITS – short for Birla Institute of Technology and Science -- offers 1,400 seats in an academic year of which 800 are on the Pilani campus and the rest on the Goa campus.

“In the previous academic year we had 28 board toppers getting admission here. Otherwise the average had been around 25,” said S. Gurunarayanan, Dean of Admissions at BITS Pilani. There are altogether 28 boards in the country though some States have different regions under one board. The CBSE has five regions under it.

Most of the toppers now here have opted for computer sciences followed by EEE -- electrical, electronic and engineering, that is. “Eighteen of them opted for computers while 11 chose EEE and one instrumentation,” according to Meenakshi Raman, Chief, Publications and Media Relations, at BITS Pilani. “The institute has kept a quota for the toppers of boards to protect the school system; to uphold the importance of marks one scores in the school examination,” noted Dr. Maheshwari.

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