Cen­tre gives 7 top IITs power to hike fees with­out nod Rat­tled state govt gives free­ships to poor stu­dents from all com­mu­ni­ties

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - FRONT PAGE - Nee­lam Pandey nee­lam.pandey@hin­dus­tan­times.com Suren­dra P Gan­gan suren­dra.gan­gan@hin­dus­tan­times.com

Seven top In­dian In­sti­tutes of Tech­nol­ogy (IITs) will be al­lowed to fix their own fee struc­ture with­out con­sult­ing the apex coun­cil that gov­erns these pre­mier in­sti­tutes for tech­ni­cal ed­u­ca­tion in the coun­try.

The move to grant them fee autonomy is part of a larger pro­ject called Vish­wa­jeet, which is aimed at as­sist­ing the IITs to im­prove their global univer­sity rank­ings. None of the IITs are in the top 200 of the pres­ti­gious Times Higher Ed­u­ca­tion World Univer­sity Rank­ing for 2016-17, in which IIT Bom­bay is the lone en­try in the 351-400 rank­ings.

“The de­ci­sion to fix the fee of stu­dents would be del­e­gated to the board of gov­er­nors (BoG) of these in­sti­tu­tions,” a source said.

At present, the fee struc­ture is de­ter­mined by the IIT coun­cil, the top de­ci­sion-mak­ing body, which is chaired by Union hu­man re­source de­vel­op­ment min­is­ter and in­cludes IIT di­rec­tors and board of gov­er­nors of each in­sti­tute.

Each IIT charges Rs2 lakh from BTech stu­dents, though these in­sti­tutes spend al­most Rs 6 lakh a year on each stu­dent.

The IIT coun­cil has ap­proved pro­ject Vish­wa­jeet on Au­gust 24.

In a bid to ease ten­sions in the Maratha com­mu­nity and re­duce the in­ten­sity of the on­go­ing protests, the BJP-led state gov­ern­ment on Thurs­day an­nounced var­i­ous schemes and free­ships for pro­fes­sional cour­ses for eco­nom­i­cally back­ward class (EBC) stu­dents from all the com­mu­ni­ties.

The steps seem to be an at­tempt to extend reser­va­tion on the ba­sis of fi­nan­cial back­ward­ness.

Chief min­is­ter Deven­dra Fad­navis also said he had started de­lib­er­a­tions with Dalit lead­ers to pre­vent the mis­use of the Sched­uled Caste and Sched­uled Tribe (Preven­tion of Atroc­i­ties) Act, 1989 — a ma­jor is­sue for the Maratha ag­i­ta­tors — be­sides reser­va­tion for the po­lit­i­cally in­flu­en­tial com­mu­nity in gov­ern­ment jobs and ed­u­ca­tion.

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