No takers for courses of this power sector institute as it fails to keep pace with changes

Twesh Mishra New Delhi | Updated on April 23, 2019 Published on April 23, 2019

The National Power Training Institute (NPTI), the Centre’s flagship institution to impart technical education for the conventional power generation sector seems to be struggling to maintain its position as students have shied away from its new courses.

NPTI offered a two-year Masters in Business Administration (MBA) course and a four-year Bachelor of Technology (B Tech) course in Power Engineering. But they were discontinued because the faculty could not meet the All-India Council for Technical Education’s (AICTE) minimum qualification requirement.

“NPTI had initiated these courses in Power Engineering in 2001 and were specifically designed for the power sector. These courses were to impart technical as well as managerial training for students. The courses were accredited by the AICTE,” said SK Choudhary, the former Principal-Director of NPTI, who has been closely associated with these courses since their inception.

“Under the AICTE norms, it was mandatory for the NPTI faculty to attain a certain level of educational qualification to maintain the accreditation of degrees. This could not be achieved and eventually the NPTI management decided to junk the four-year B Tech programme and the two-year MBA programme,” Choudhary said.

However, NPTI officials maintained that “there is no truth in any of these allegations raised. Information about the courses run by the institute is available on NPTI website”.

The decision to discontinue these courses was followed by a Cabinet decision in 2017, according to Choudhary. The institute then decided to offer a few other one-year PGDC courses. But those were also not getting a good response with less than 20 per cent of the advertised seats being filled up.

But the move to change courses can be seen as a function of the natural evolution of the power generation sector. Commenting on the new educational avenues for the sector, an NTPC spokesperson said: “Significant changes have taken place in the sphere of managing the business — be it in the regulation, processes or strategies. Future students are required to be well aware of domestic regulations, cross-border regulations, dynamics of the power/energy market, and economics of energy mix among others.”

“The NTPC School of Business (NSB) has also introduced courses on concepts on microgrids, energy system modelling and others as elective subjects for our students,” the NTPC spokesperson added.

Commenting on the changing manpower requirements of the sector, the spokesperson said, “The conventional core technology is pretty old (both sub-critical and super critical). However, technological changes have been brought to enhance efficiency, monitoring and reducing the usage of resources. Discrete courses are imparted through training for developing technical skills.”

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Published on April 23, 2019
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