Chennai: If you are a candidate about to appear for the engineering counselling session beginning Friday, this is an advice best followed. The Tamil Nadu Engineering Admissions officials are warning students against falling into the trap of dubious consultants, who appear every year at the counselling centre during the admission process. In the guise of helping students, these “agents”, usually commissioned by nondescript engineering colleges that find it hard to attract candidates, end up recommending institutions that pay them even if it is not the best choice that the student could look at given his/her marks and rank.
A senior official at the Anna University said, over the last several years, a few such agents have been caught in the act and handed over to police. Explaining the modus operandi of these agents, the official said they pose as consultants and target students who haven’t yet decided the college or the course they want to study or had missed the opportunity to avail of a seat in a preferred institution due to their ranks.
“They claim they have knowledge about the best colleges for specific courses. Once they earn the trust of the candidates and their parents, they accompany them to the hall during the process and end up recommending the institution that pays them,” said the official.
In order to identify such fraudsters, officials appointed by the University will mingle with the candidates starting Friday to see if they are approached by such agents. “We have assigned this duty to a few of our own people at the University. By this we hope to identify the fraudsters,” said the official, adding that the best way for students to avoid such agents is to refuse any help if they are approached by strangers and inform the officials in the centre about such people.