Govern­ment plans in­ter­est-free loans be­fore likely fee hike

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - - NATION - Bra­jesh Ku­mar

NEW DELHI: The govern­ment is ex­plor­ing ways to pro­vide in­ter­est-free loans to un­der­priv­i­leged stu­dents at the IITS and NITS to cush­ion them for a steep fee hike that’s likely to be im­ple­mented soon at the pre­mier en­gi­neer­ing col­leges.

Stu­dentsatthen­ation­alin­sti­tutes of Tech­nol­ogy (NITS) will see their an­nual fee al­most dou­ble, from ₹70,000to₹1.25lakh,whilethe­cen­tre has set up a com­mit­tee to weigh a pro­posal of the IITS’ top de­ci­sion­mak­ing body to nearly triple the fee,from₹90,000peryearto₹2.5lakh.

The ar­gu­ment be­hind the hike is that the govern­ment should only take care of planned ex­pen­di­ture on labs, equip­ment, li­brary and the run­ning cost of staff salary, house­keep­ing, wa­ter and elec­tric­ity should be borne by stu­dents.

“Since the hike is go­ing to be steep the govern­ment wants to en­sure those who re­quire ed­u­ca­tion loans do not face any prob­lems,” said an of­fi­cial. “Set­ting up of helpdesks at all en­gi­neer­ing col­leges and do­ing away with the in­ter­est on loans could be a pos­si­bil­ity.”

Pro­vid­ing loans on eas­ier terms, the govern­ment be­lieves, will blunt the steep hike and en­sure fewer stu­dents de­fault on re­pay­ments.

The nearly four dozen IITS and NITS heav­ily sub­sidise the ed­u­ca­tion of their stu­dents, with the govern­ment bear­ing a ma­jor slice of the run­ning ex­penses.

A com­mit­tee headed by sci­en­tist Anil Kakod­kar had suggested rais­ing the IIT fee to ₹2.25 lakh a year to close the gap be­tween what the IITS charge and spend per stu­dent.

The govern­ment, of­fi­cials said, will also have to re­work the limit for col­lat­eral se­cu­rity a stu­dent will have to pro­vide fol­low­ing the hike with the to­tal fee for four-year cour­ses at the NITS and IITS reach­ing₹4lak­hand₹10lakhre­spec­tively.

Even af­ter the pro­posed fee hike comes into ef­fect, the IITS will re­main cheaper than most top en­gi­neer­ing col­leges around the world. (see graphic)

An IIT spends ₹3.5 lakh ev­ery year on a stu­dent who only pays the in­sti­tute ₹90,000.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.