Scale a peak and become eligible for coveted CET seat

People are often urged to ‘climb every mountain’ to follow their dreams and chase success. Students in the State aspiring for seats in professional courses can take this metaphor literally. The Higher Education Department has amended the Karnataka Selection of Candidates for Admission to Government Seats in Professional Educational Institutions (Amendment) Rules 2018. With this, young mountaineers who have conquered Mount Everest (8,848 m) or scaled peaks above 5,500 m as part of the Directorate of General National Cadet Corps (NCC) team will be eligible for government and government quota seats through the Common Entrance Test (CET) route. Cadets who have taken part in the national integration camp, All-India trekking camp, advance leadership camp, rock climbing training camp or have NCC B certificate are also eligible to secure a seat through the CET’s NCC quota. For every camp or accomplishment in the cadet corps, students are given points based on which the final selection for a candidate under the NCC quota is done. The decision to tweak the rules was done to encourage mountaineering as a sport and promote budding talent. “Those from the mountaineering fraternity demanded that we include this as a category to get NCC reservation. But we decided that the student has to scale peaks above 5,500 m so that there is competition,” a senior official in the department said. ‘Rethink move’ Not everyone, however, has welcomed the move. Ramachandra Rao, founder-organiser of Lal Bahadur Mountaineering Institute, said it is very difficult for climbers to scale such heights. “It is unlikely that it would benefit any climber as scaling such heights requires intense training. It is very difficult for a 17 year old to have such stamina,” he said.

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